SAJCC Council cancels annual Tucson Japanese Festival for 2021

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Southern Arizona Japanese Cultural Coalition Council decided to cancel the annual Tucson Japanese Festival for 2021. It was tentatively scheduled for January 16, 2021 at the Tucson Chinese Cultural Center, 1288 W. River Rd. which recently announced that it will be closed till the end of 2020, due to the pandemic.

This annual Tucson Japanese Festival is in it’s 8th year, usually held in January to celebrate the New Year. The Tucson Japanese Festival started out as the Tucson Mochitsuki (mochi pounding event) in 2014, held at Yume Japanese Gardens. It was hosted by the Tucson Chinese Cultural Center for the last 2 years, 2019 and 2020, and previously held for three years at Pima Community College Downtown campus.

Any questions about the festival should be emailed to Director Yuki Ibuki at Check our Facebook page for updates on the SAJCC as well.

SAJCC donates assistance funds during COVID-19 pandemic

The Southern Arizona Japanese Cultural Coaltion (SAJCC) Council decided to provide emergency assistance funds to Japanese American businesses and organizations during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic. A committee consisting of Director Yuki Ibuki, Treasurer Clint Cooper, Secretary K. Negley, and Dr. Min and Evelyn Yanagihashi set up a selection process and chose these recipients, with approval of the full Council. Funds were distributed in July, 2020 to:

  • Odaiko Sonora (taiko drummers): $1500 Covid-19 support donation
  • Tucson Japanese Language School: $500 for Covid-19 scholarship support plus a donation of 15 purchased Family Memberships for Yume Japanese Gardens
  • Yume Japanese Gardens: $500 Covid-19 support donation
  • Ikkyu Restaurant: $500 to assist with their restaurant operations for food donations to medical personnel of Covid-19

Be well everyone, and stay safe during this pandemic. For more info about these donated funds, contact Director Yuki Ibuki at

Wood turner Lynne Yamaguchi receives $4000 New Works grant

Lynne Yamaguchi – “Repair, Remake, Redeem”

“A visual art project making, deconstructing, and reconstructing wood vessels or constructing new forms from their pieces while posing the question, “How do we make whole the brokenness of the world?””

“Five artists have been awarded $4,000 each to start innovative new art projects thanks to the New Works Artist Project Grant. The New Works Grant seeks to support diverse, innovative artwork created and produced by artists in the City of Tucson and Pima County. This year’s recipients explore new mediums and inventive presentation techniques — addressing themes like race, community, trauma, and healing in creative ways. This grant round features projects in the categories of visual arts, literary arts, and video/film/moving image.” (Arts Foundation for Tucson and Southern Arizona)

More on artist Lynne Yamaguchi:

Consul General Akira Muto to speak on “Japan’s Strategy to Respond to COVID 19 Pandemic” on July 29

Speaker: Consul General of Japan in Los Angeles MUTO Akira

“Consul General Muto’s overseas postings before arriving in Los Angeles in August 2019 include two assignments in Russia (Moscow), and in the U.S., to Washington D.C., and Boston. He was a visiting scholar at Stanford University’s Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies just prior to his current position. This is his first time working in the U.S. southwest, serving the jurisdiction of Southern California and Arizona. He is greatly honored to be able to serve as consul general in a region with such deep ties to Japan.”

To learn learn more about Consul General Muto: click here