1000 Cranes, 1000 Dreams project at Yume Japanese Gardens started May 6

The 1,000 Cranes, 1,000 Dreams Project

“Yume has launched a signal community project to provide hope and healing to hearts frayed by the coronavirus. It’s called 1,000 Cranes, 1,000 Dreams.

The project takes its name from the meaning of Yume in English – “dream” – and from the graceful and elegant Japanese crane, said in fable to live for 1,000 years.

Fruit of its mythically long life, the Japanese crane enjoys hope in a happy future. Our mission is to instill a similar healing confidence in all who participate in 1,000 Cranes, 1,000 Dreams. Our means to achieve this lies in the Japanese tradition of Senbazuru, according to which those who devote time and effort to make origami cranes see their most heartfelt wishes granted.  

We invite you to join 1,000 Cranes, 1,000 Dreams, to shrink the darkness of disaster and brighten the light of your well-being.

To take part, we ask that you and as many of your family members and friends as you may persuade each make at least one origami crane and contribute it to Yume. This is not an amusement to distract you from a perilous pandemic. Rather, it’s a profound act of love and generosity toward others, and of authentic care for yourself. You’ll find that participation in a meaningful collective creative achievement opens an avenue to personal restoration for you.

Link here for video instructions on how to make your crane: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yTY-nGYYq_c

Birds made of any paper without images can be mailed to the Gardens at 2130 N. Alvernon Way, Tucson, AZ, 85712, or dropped in a box inside the parking lot gate.

When Yume reopens – we’re temporarily closed in the interest of public health – your origami birds will be displayed with hundreds more all across the Gardens. You’ll see cranes fluttering in our wisteria and pines, perching on boulders, flocking on bamboo gates and fences, and flying from stone lanterns to stone water basins. 

More about Senbazuru and the Japanese crane

Strings of origami cranes are often hung in Japanese temples and shrines. Offered to friends, a collection of cranes implies a wish for their prosperity and good health, and given to newlyweds, it expresses desire for their lasting happiness. Because the Japanese crane mates for life and guards its nest with especial vigilance, it symbolizes conjugal devotion and fidelity, as well as protectiveness of family. This has won it wide use in Japan as a decorative motif on wedding kimonos and nuptial sweets.

Feathered mainly in snow-white plumage and with a red crown, Japan’s native crane likewise incarnates purity and beauty. Able to balance perfectly on one leg and yet react with lightning agility to snare a frog or fish or escape danger, it similarly models emotional control and vital energy, qualities that made it a common crest on warriors’ helmets in the age of samurai, who saw in the bird inspiration for loyalty, honor and strength. And with a nearly six-foot-long span of strong and sheltering wings, in Buddhist circles the Japanese crane figures as a protector of the weak and transporter of souls to the highest levels of enlightenment.

Lastly, the Japanese crane is a disciplined, powerful flyer, and in flocks it wheels across the sky as member of a purposively moving community of supportive and loyal companions. What better bird could there be to embody the nature of 1,000 Cranes, 1,000 Dreams? Join us, and find wings of your own to loft you to hope and healing.”

Otaku Nation Japanese hobby shop moved to new location

Japanese hobby import shop Otaku Nation has moved during this COVID Spring outbreak to a larger location at 2900 E. Broadway Blvd., Suite 134 (in middle of the shopping complex, on southside of Broadway, west of Country Club Rd.) They are open for curbside pick up and delivery, just call (520) 207- 6885. Check their website for Japanese imported items, collectible cards, stuffed toys, etc. Former address was 3919 E. Pima St. www.otakunationaz.com.

UPDATE: Otaku Nation re-opening on May 8, with strict rules such as mask wearing for all customers & staff, limited time in store, social distancing. Read more on their FB page: www.facebook.com/otakunationaz/

From their website:

“Otaku Nation is a hobby shop where you can learn about tons of different engaging hobbies from Japan! We carry all sorts of items here, from collectible figures to home goods, wall art to art supplies, model kits, manga, anime, board games and more!”

Otaku Nation AZ logo

Children’s Day doll display at Mini Time Machine Museum of Miniatures cancelled

Prior to this coronavirus outbreak in Arizona, the Mini Time Museum of Miniatures, 4455 E. Camp Lowell, had scheduled their annual Children’s Day doll display for April 7 to May 17, 2020. However the Tucson Mayor’s E.O. has postponed non-essential businesses to stay closed till April 17. AZ Governor then issued a new proclamation for business closures till April 30. I just got notification that this exhibit is unfortunately now cancelled.

Regardless, you an still fly your koinobori (koi wind kites) on May 5, 2020 to celebrate Children’s Day and Boy’s Day in your family. Honor the boys and children in your family, Japanese style even during this unprecedented time. Happy Children’s Day/Boy’s Day 2020.

koinobori on display, to fly on May 5 for Children’s Day/Boy’s Day

Pima County Library seeking haiku for month of April for National Poetry Month

Will you write haiku with us?Pima County Public Library·Thursday, April 2, 2020·

“Will you write haiku with us? April is National Poetry Month, so we have a haiku challenge for you! Each week this month there will be a different topic to write haiku poems about. You don’t have to write one every week.April 2-10: Write Haiku about this weird new normal we’re all adjusting to.April 11-19: Write haiku about spring in the Sonoran Desert.April 19-25: The third week of April is National Library Week, so our theme is books and reading and libraries.April 26-30: And for the last week of the month, we want you to share haiku about your furry and feathered friends.


  1. Post your poems as comments to poetry posts on PCPL’s social media accounts on either Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.
  2. Use the hashtag #PCPLhaikuchallenge, and any others you wish. #stayconnected #poetrymonth2020 #communityhaikutime would also be great.
  3. Haiku should be original, that is to say, written by you or someone in your family. If you find one by someone else that you love and absolutely must share, please credit them in your comment.
  4. No prizes, but your poems will be compiled at the end of the month in a blog post on our website.
  5. What’s a haiku? Haiku are non-rhyming poems that are only 3 lines. The first line is 5 syllables, the second is 7 syllables, and the last one is 5 syllables.

P.S. This would be a great homeschooling assignment.#PCPLhaikuchallenge#stayconnected#poetrymonth2020#communityhaikutime”

2020 So. AZ Haiku winners at AZ Matsuri

The Arizona Matsuri in Phoenix sponsors an annual Haiku Contest (now in 6th year), open to all students and adults, plus a Japanese Language category. Here’s the information on who won in Southern Arizona, published on their website in the 2020 E-book:


High School Haiku category –Outstanding haiku on page 17 of 2020 E-book:

Raquelle Wuollet, BASIS Oro Valley, Tucson

“Falling desert snow

A fleeting gift from winter

Granted once a year”


College & Adult Haiku category

Carolyn Sugiyama Classen (aka Carolyn Classen), Editor at SAJCC’s website and founding SAJCC member won an Outstanding haiku in this category. This is her first win in a haiku contest. Her haiku was on display on Feb. 22 to 23 at the Arizona Matsuri festival’s haiku booth. Page 21 of online 2020 E-book.

SAJCC Editor Carolyn Classen

(Issei are first generation Japanese Americans, who emigrated from Japan. Shikata ga nai means “It cannot be helped”, which was what the Japanese Americans used to say about the WWII Internment camp evacuation).


Japanese Language Haiku category

SAJCC Council member Miki Pimienta

Miki Pimienta, active SAJCC Council member & volunteer, past winner of several AZ Matsuri haiku (2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019) , on page 28 of 2020 E-Book

“Hana kaoru Habarina yoru no Enkai da

Fragrant flowers Javelina evening Feast”

Congratulations to all the 2020 Haiku contest winners.

2020 E-book : https://4c48e4ff-9f71-42e9-a59b-33f3e36f4621.filesusr.com/ugd/f10fde_d1953f69a1ba48e09f02ebc85654de1d.pdf