NW 2nd Ave
Upcoming Activities for Oregon Nikkei Endowment
Breaking the Silence – Stories of Courage from our Elders
Four speakers will talk about their lives during and after the Second World War. Moderated by Linda Tamura of Willamette University, the conversation will focus on the role storytelling plays in the healing process after trauma. The panelists will connect their experiences with the war and their later decisions to begin public speaking.
One of the speakers, George Nakata lived in a Japanese American concentration camp in Idaho during World War II. A second speaker, Taka Mizote, spent the war years in farm labor camps in eastern Oregon. The other two speakers, Les and Eva Aigner, survived the Second World War in Europe then lived through political unrest in Hungary before emigrating to America.
For more information on the speakers or to RSVP, visit www.ojmche.org.
Uprooted features a selection of images from federal photographer Russell Lee's documentation of Japanese American farm labor camps near the towns of Nyssa, Oregon, and Rupert, Shelley, and Twin Falls in Idaho. Visit our exhibits page to learn more.
Minidoka Center Field Project
The goal of the Center Field Project is to re-construct one of the baseball fields at Minidoka and its supporting structures, including scoreboard, backstop, player benches, and exhibit panels.
Baseball played a key role in sustaining the Japanese Americans who were incarcerated at the Minidoka War Relocation Center from 1942-45. Many camp residents—youth and adults, male and female—played baseball or softball on one of the many fields throughout the camp.
Field-In-A-Day is based on the 1952 Farm-In-A-Day event on property that was part of the historic Minidoka site. Approximately 1500 volunteers built a two bedroom home, dug irrigation canals, built corrals, and planted crops — all in a single day. On Saturday, May 28th, individuals and groups are invited to join Friends of Minidoka and park staff in rebuilding one of the baseball fields that were interspersed among the 44 residential blocks.
Support the Minidoka Center Field Project by volunteering for Field-In-A-Day, making a donation, or purchasing a special commemorative baseball (a portion of sales supports the Center Field Project). The baseball ($10, case costs extra) is available for purchase at the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center. Please visit www.nps.gov for more information.
Resources & Services
Other Community Events
Oregon Historical Society
Using both rare and seldom seen objects like Chinese opera costumes, theatrical sets, bilingual text, audiovisual media, and interactive visitor stations, Beyond the Gate will tell a sprawling transnational story of contact and trade between China and the West, focusing on Portland's Old (1850-1905) and New Chinatown (1905-1950). This exhibition brings to life the vibrant the sights and sounds of places of business, education, and entertainment, offering visitors a glimpse of life beyond the gate. Visit www.ohs.org for more information.
Chinese American: Exclusion / Inclusion
America's desire for trade with China is older than Independence, yet in 1882 the nation's borders shut for the first time to exclude Chinese workers. A long and bitter contest over immigration and citizenship ensued, influenced by tensions within the United States and the changing tenor of relations between the two countries.
This struggle over freedom and the right to belong shaped the Chinese American experience and the very formation of American society. It is a story of extraordinary individuals, fearful and courageous acts, and unexpected twists and turns that have surprising relevance to our world today. Visit www.ohs.org for more information.
APANO – Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon
APANO's Voices of Change 2016: A Celebration of APA Heritage Month is an annual gathering to celebrate our diverse heritages, and to invite others to share in the festivities. Join APANO for this celebration with 250+ community leaders and supporters for an exciting evening of cultural performance, delectable dining, and a prestigious keynote speaker, Executive Director Miya Yoshitani of the Asian Pacific Environmental Network. Learn more or register at www.apano.org.
Lan Su Chinese Garden
May is Asian Pacific Islander Heritage month. This nationally recognized month celebrates the many cultures from the Asian continent and the Pacific Islands. Lan Su celebrates Asian Heritage Month with exciting performances every Saturday and Sunday in May from local cultural organizations and dance troupes. Learn more at www.lansugarden.org.
Sogetsu Ikebana – Portland Branch
With "Wild and Crazy!" as the theme, the 2016 Rose Show features Japanese floral fine art with a twist. Ikebana arrangements will combine the use of conventional plant material with unconventional, "anything goes" materials including metal, wire, paper, plastic, yarn, fabric, wood and glass. Admission to the Oregon Historical Society will be free during weekend hours.
Inspiring Action and Igniting Justice
Minoru Yasui's life proves that one person can make a difference. The purpose of this symposium is to inspire action and ignite justice. Opportunities and implications will be explored and shared with the intention that attendees see what they can do to make this world a better place.
4th Annual Cherry Blossom Bazaar
Shop 'til you drop! This is a unique sale of Japanese collectibles, artwork, dishware, furniture, and more. Items start as low as 25 cents! Something for every age, taste, and budget! All proceeds benefit Oregon Nikkei Endowment.
Inaugural Min Yasui Day March for Justice
On the evening of March 28, 1942, a 25-year-old attorney, Minoru "Min" Yasui, deliberately violated the racially discriminatory military curfew to initiate a case to test the constitutionality of the curfew upon American citizens. He walked on NW 3rd Avenue in downtown Portland after curfew and when he wasn't arrested, proceeded to police headquarters where he argued for his arrest.
Min spent nine months in solitary confinement in the Multnomah County jail as he appealed his case to the U.S. Supreme Court. He was released in 1943 only to be sent the Minidoka American concentration camp. Thereafter, he spent the rest of his life fighting for civil rights and social justice for all, never losing faith in the constitution or his country. His lifelong fight for justice and equality led to his recognition as the first Oregonian to be awarded (posthumously) the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Barack Obama.
This program is presented by the Minoru Yasui Tribute Committee and Oregon Nikkei Endowment, with support from Barry and Jordan Menashe and Stoll Berne. For more information about Minoru Yasui please visit www.minoruyasuitribute.org.
Please join us for this free lecture on our latest exhibit, Uprooted: Japanese American Farm Labor Camps during World War II, on view at the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center. Morgen Young, consulting historian and project director of Uprooted, will provide insight on the Nikkei that volunteered to harvest sugar beets in Eastern Oregon. This lecture will also include special guests who will speak about their experience of being incarcerated at what became known as "The Camp without a Fence."
Collections Up Close: Letters from Beyond the Fence
Each year since 1978, a Day of Remembrance is held on February 19th to commemorate the signing of Executive Order 9066. Deschutes Public Library, the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center, Densho: The Japanese American Legacy Project, and the Japanese Association of Central Oregon are pleased to welcome Weston Nakamura-Koyama, Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center volunteer, for a program tracing one family's journey from the Portland to America's concentration camps. During his presentation Weston will relate the moving stories he uncovered from his family's correspondence while they were incarcerated during World War II. Visit www.deschuteslibrary.org for more information.
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