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JASP Newsletters

Read our latest newsletter below, or view our archived issues. To make sure you don't miss the next JASP newsletter, sign up today.

April 2009 Newsletter
Hot of the Press
Japan America Society of Pennsylvania Events

Use the links below for articles you may have missed.

Act 48 Workshop Furoshiki Intro
A new initiative from Japan America Society of Pennsylvania
Wednesday, April 22, 2009

In honor of Earth Day we are partnering with the Allegheny Intermediate Unit and The Asian Studies scarf2.gifCenter at the University of Pittsburgh to present a program about Japan's decorative and reusable cloths for wrapping and carrying objects. We will introduce the furoshiki and discuss its long history and relevance in contemporary Japan. We will learn about other cultures that use similar materials and brainstorm how to develop lesson plans about these colorful cloths. In addition to Act 48 hours, each participant will receive a furoshiki and a parking pass. Click for details!

Monday, May 11, 2009
Valley Brook Country Club
McMurray, PA
The Japan America Society of Pennsylvania’s Paul J. Wilhelm Golf Outing is a popular event and spaces fill quickly. The number of participants is limited on the 27-hole course. Reservations are taken on a first-come first-served basis.

Registration Deadline:
April 17, 2009

The cost is $275 per person, $1,100 per foursome. Price includes golf fees, lunch, course refreshments, bar beverages and dinner. The cost to attend only the dinner is $60 per person.

10 a.m. Registration/Lunch
12 p.m. Shotgun Start (Modified
Scramble Format)
5:30 p.m. Cocktails/Dinner

Golfers compete for winning team trophies, individual skill prizes, and hole-in-one prizes. Highlights of the event include the Grand Prize Raffle, exciting opportunities for theater tickets, dinners, golf items and more. Tickets are sold during the cocktail hour and dinner. Prizes will be awarded during the dinner.

Please use the links below to download an invitation and complete sponsorship details:


Advertising Opportunities

Proceeds from the Golf Outing support the JASP’s educational outreach programs for students and training for teachers, as well as an annual Japanese Speech and Language Competition we hold in conjunction with the University of Pittsburgh.

To find out more about all upcoming events, please visit our events page.

Japanese Speech and Language Competition
On March 6, the 2009 Japanese Speech and Language Contest was held at the Oakland Campus of the University of Pittsburgh. Close to 80 students participated, representing eight schools in Pittsburgh. The students were divided into three levels, and delivered a speech using this year’s theme: Self-introduction.

The contest was hosted by the Japan America Society of Pennsylvania and the Asian Studies at the University Center for International Studies of the University of Pittsburgh and sponsored by Westinghouse, Sumitomo Corporation, Japan Iron and Steel Federation and Mitsubishi Endowments and Mitsubishi Electric Power Products, Inc.

The purpose of this contest is to provide a platform for Japanese language students to demonstrate their Japanese language abilities, to introduce their own native cultures, and to share their knowledge of Japan with others.

The overall winner, Cody Magaro of Norwin High School, took home the special prize – an electronic dictionary provided by the Japanese Consulate. In his speech, he talked about his family and his favorite activities, using clear pronunciation and a broad vocabulary. All the contestants delivered excellent, enthusiastic speeches, despite the fact that many of them studied Japanese for only a couple of years.

The following students were the winners of each level of the Speech Competition:

First prize, Level 1 (second year Japanese language students)
Jennifer Smith, Butler High School (Teacher: Masami Schaper)

First prize, Level 2 (third year students) Robert Coury III, Upper St. Clair High School (Teacher: Junko Kapples)

First prize, Level 3/4 (fourth year students and up) Cody Magaro, Norwin High School (Teacher: Hiroko Maekawa)

The other category in the competition was the “Poster Session,” in which students presented posters featuring this year’s topic “Sports in Japan." This event was open to those who have received little or no instruction in Japanese language but are involved in activities related to Japan. The prize went to Lindsay Milford of Allegheny Clarion High School (Teacher: Dixie Lipnichan), for her poster on volleyball.

After the contest, the participants watched a film about high school baseball, entitled Kokoyakyu.

Congratulations to our winners and thank you to our sponsors for another successful event!

Click here for photos of event.

Upcoming Events
Pecha Kucha Night
Friday, April 3, 2009

Doors open:7 p.m.
Presentations begin: 8 p.m.

Join AIGA Pittsburgh and AIA Pittsburgh for Pecha Kucha Night, a place for the local creative class to meet and network while presenters display work in 6 minutes and 40 seconds of exquisitely matched words and images and then sit the hell down.

Pecha Kucha, a Japanese term for the sound of conversation, was originally devised by Klein Dytham Architecture in Tokyo in 2003 and has spread virally to over 133 cities across the world. $10 per person at the door.

For more information contact Greg Gibilisco at
412-889-2419 or email info@pittsburgh.aiga.org.

Sakura Time!
Cherry Blossom Festival
April 17-26, 2009

Take a ride on the Schuylkill; celebrate Spring! Two weeks of events for the entire family in Reading and West Reading.

See cherry blossoms, plant your own cherry tree. Also parade, Ginza Arcade, Earth Day activities, Reading Phillies game, art at the GoggleWorks and other events.

Sponsored by Greater Reading Convention & Visitors Bureau; presented by RiverPlace on the Schuylkill.

For up-to-minute details, click here, or call 610-375-4085, 800-443-6610, or 610-373-4131.

Sakura Planting Inauguration Ceremony and Work Party
Saturday, April 25, 2009
9:00 a.m.

Join us as we mark the first annual celebration and planting day of the Pittsburgh Sakura Project. Members and friends of the local Japanese community will plant 40 flowering cherry trees in North Park.

Registration and digging will start at 10:00 am followed by an opening ceremony and a Taiko drum performance by world champion drummers, Takumi Kato and Ryo Shiobara.
Click for details!

Cherry Blossom Festival Washington, DC March 28 - April 12, 2009

There are many spectacular events that will occur during this festival. To see them all, click here.

Philadelphia Cherry Blossom Festival
April 5, 2009

Join us in Fairmount Park for a spring celebration of Japanese arts and culture! Sakura Sunday is Philadelphia's own o-hanami, the Japanese tradition of revelry beneath the blossoming cherry trees.

The centerpiece event of our Festival will feature live music, dance performances, martial arts demonstrations, tea ceremony presentations, origami and calligraphy workshops, shiatsu massage, Japanese food, and much more.

Click for details!

Japan Society Live Webcast:

Way out of Economic and Financial Crisis: Lessons and Actions
Thursday, April 23, 2009

Governor Shirakawa will address the current global economic crisis and offer lessons from Japan’s recent experience.


To stay informed about all Japan Society of New York programs and events -- subscribe now!

Annual Japanese Pedagogy Workshop for K-16 Japanese Language Teachers and College Instructors
9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 25, 2009

This year’s program will be led by Dr. Dan Dewey Brigham Young University), Dr. Charles Perfetti (University of Pittsburgh), and Ms. Dixie Lipnichan (Allegheny-Clarion Valley High School).

The title of the workshop is Enhancing Input and Interaction in the Japanese Language Classroom.

Click for details!

Asian Heritage Day with the Pittsburgh Pirates
Friday, May 29, 2009
7:05 p.m., Pirates VS Houston Astros

Attendees are encouraged to wear traditional ethnic clothes and bring information about the various community groups. Discount tickets will be available for $7, $10, $17.

Please stay tuned for more updates from the Pittsburgh Pirates on this event!

Korekiyo Takahashi: Man ahead of his times
Dr. Smethurst published in Asahi Shinbun / International Herald Tribune


Click here to read the article in English or Japanese.

Dr. Smethurst's recent book “From Foot Soldier to Finance Minister: Takahashi Korekiyo, Japan’s Keynes” (Harvard 2007) will be translated and published in Japan in this year.

Archived JASP Newsletters
2009 2008
December 2009 December 2008
October 2009 October 2008
September 2009 September 2008
August 2009 August 2008
June 2009 July 2008
May 2009 June 2008
April 2009  
March 2009  
February 2009  
January 2009