JAMsj E-News
Japanese American Museum of San Jose
February 2011
In This Issue
Open Passage Poetry Reading
San Jose Day of Remembrance
J-Town Cinema
JAMsj/Yu-Ai Kai Book Club
Volunteer Opportunities
JAMsj Calendar
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JAMsj Blog (NEW)
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Author Ann Muto

Ann Muto will present her poetry from Open Passage at JAMsj on February 12.

Poetry Reading and Book Signing

Open Passage


Ann Muto   


Poetry Reading and Book Signing

February 12, 2011

1:00 to 2:00 p.m.

Japanese American Museum of San Jose

535 N. Fifth Street

San Jose, CA 95112  

 Open Passage




History crashed into my mother's life.

The impact of that collision,

A mystery to me.


My sorrow is that we never talked:

How it was for her,

How it was for me.




The following review is from Patricia J. Machmiller who received the "Best Memoir 2010" award by the Bay Area Independent Publisher's Association.


Ann Muto was born in the internment camp of Poston, Arizona in 1944. In her book of poems, Open Passage, she explores the experience of being a child of internees--the legacy of the sad and shameful time when the United States interned thousands of Japanese Americans throughout the American West. In her poems Muto tries to come to terms with the effects that traumatized her parents, an experience about which they never spoke, but which forever changed them, and in the process, was handed down to their children in vague, yet tangible forms. Read rest of the article on the new JAMsj blog...  



Seating is limited. Reserve your seat by calling the JAMsj office at (408) 294-3138 or email



All proceeds from the sale of this book benefit the Japanese American Museum of San Jose.


  31st Annual San Jose Day of Remembrance

Jimi Yamaichi Speaks at the San Jose Day of Remembrance 

By Sarah Gabot 

Jimi Yamaichi
JAMsj curator, Jimi Yamaichi. Photo courtesy of Andy Frazer.



31st Annual San Jose Day of Remembrance 

February 20, 2011

5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

San Jose Buddhist Church Betsuin

640 N. Fifth Street

San Jose, CA 95112


JAMsj director and curator, Jimi Yamaichi, a pioneer against Asian American discrimination and a hero to several local communities, will be the remembrance speaker at the 31st Annual San Jose Day of Remembrance event. The 2011 Day of Remembrance event, titled "Fighting Against Fear", commemorates the signing of Executive Order 9066 which led to the incarceration of 120,000 people of Japanese descent during WWII.


Day of Remembrance Candlelighting Ceremony
The Day of Remembrance candlelighting ceremony honors former internees, war veterans and others who were affected by Executive Order 9066. Photo courtesy of Andy Frazer.

Yamaichi will address his experiences of struggle and protest during a time when America was less tolerant of Asians, especially Japanese, in America. His speech will touch upon his experience in the Heart Mountain and Tule Lake internment camps, as well as America's "historical fear of people who look like the enemy." Read rest of article...



Click here for more information on the San Jose Day of Remembrance event.



Hinamatsuri : Girls' Day


Hinamatsuri (Japanese Doll Festival)

March 5 & 6, 2011 


The Japanese American Museum of San Jose  and Wesley United Methodist Church  will feature Hinamatsuri Doll Festival  exhibits, as follows: 


12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.,  March 5 & 6, 2011:   Japanese American Museum of San Jose

10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m, March 6, 2011: Wesley United Methodist Church


Hina-matsuri Doll Display
Seven-tiered Hina doll set. Photo courtesy of Michaelbuddy.


The Japanese Doll Festival  (Hinamatsuri), or Girls' Day, is a festival celebrated by families with girls, wishing their daughters good health and growth. Traditionally, beautiful dolls representing the emperor, empress, attendants, and musicians were handcrafted especially for the occasion. The custom of displaying dolls began during the Heian period, when people believed the dolls possessed the power to contain bad spirits. 

To celebrate Girls Day, JAMsj and the Wesley United Methodist Church will showcase their unique collections of Japanese handcrafted dolls. On both March 5 and 6, JAMsj will celebrate Hinamatsuri with hands-on origami and ikebana demonstrations. On March 6th, the Wesley United Methodist Church, located across the street from JAMsj, will display traditional Japanese dolls, various collections of Japanese imperial court dolls, traditional Japanese handcrafted dolls, and treasured dolls of the church children. Both events are free and open to the public.

J-Town Cinema




JTown Cinema 


The Virtues of Corned Beef Hash


Camp Amache: An American Tragedy


February 20, 2011

Two screenings: 2:00 p.m. and 8:00  p.m.  


Japanese American Museum of San Jose

535 N. Fifth Street

San Jose, CA 95112   



Contemporary Asian Theater Scene (CATS)  presents "J-Town Cinema" on February 20, 2011. Two films will be shown at the Japanese American Museum of San Jose: "The Virtues of Corned Beef Hash" and "Camp Amache: An American Tragedy." There will also be a Q&A session with writer/director Kerwin Berk, and actors Hiroshi Kashiwagi and Tim Yamamura, all from "The Virtues of Corned Beef Hash." 


Click here to learn about the film, "The Virtues of Corned Beef Hash."

Click here to learn about the film, "Camp Amache: An American Tragedy"


Admission is free with a suggested donation. Part of the proceeds will benefit the Nichi Bei Weekly, Northern California's last weekly Japanese American newspaper.


For more information, contact catstheater@gmail.com or call (408) 867-4525.


JAMsj/Yu-Ai Kai Book Club
The Street of a Thousand Blossoms


The Street of a Thousand Blossoms by Gail Tsukiyama

JAMsj/Yu-Ai Kai Book Club


The Street of a Thousand Blossoms


Gail Tsukiyama

April 1, 2011

1:00 pm

Japanese American Museum of San Jose

535 N. Fifth Street

San Jose, CA 95112

Gail Tsukiyama produces another sensitive and unusual story, this of two very close but different brothers orphaned and so raised by their grandparents. Hiroshi is strong and confident, becoming a successful sumo wrester, Kenji struggles to find his way from ghost to master Noh mask maker. Who would have thought a story of sumo and Noh could be so interesting. Yet the reader happily learns about both traditional Japanese art forms while soaking in the author's lovely and often poetic writing, following a diverse cast of intertwined characters as they experience WWII,

the Occupation and the new Japan. Tsukiyama weaves so much into this quiet book filled with introspection as tragedy, loneliness, fear, depression and uncertainty meld with love, success, and the beauty of nature. Not a happy book, but well worth reading for the saga of history and culture and for the range of interesting characters and excellent writing. "The flowers whirl away in the wind like snow. The thing that falls away is myself."

- Linda Austin, MoonBridgeBooks.com 

The book club meets the first Friday of every other month and is always open to new members. Selections are chosen collaboratively at the end of each meeting and align with the JAMsj mission: the celebration of Japanese American art, history, and culture. Books are readily available at San Jose public libraries and also available for purchase in the JAMsj museum store. If you have questions, please contact Aggie Idemoto at  (408) 268-4440 or aggie@jamsj.org

Volunteer Opportunities

Photo: JAMsj VolunteersPhoto: JAMsj volunteers

Our October 2010 grand opening event was a smashing success, thanks to the many dedicated JAMsj volunteers.  With a larger facility and many more visitors, we need additional volunteers to help with various activities. Help is desired in many exciting areas.   
We have immediate openings, as follows:
  • Museum store staff
  • Docents
  • Volunteer coordinator
  • Event coordinators and assistants
  • Online communication developers
Other positions are also available. Click here for more information about our exciting opportunities.

Join the JAMsj family by becoming a volunteer! Send email to VolunteerAdmin@jamsj.org, fill out an online volunteer form, or call our office at (408) 294-3138.

JAMsj Calendar  

February 12, 2011: Open Passage Poetry Reading
February 20, 2011:
31st Annual San Jose Day of Remembrance
February 20, 2011: J-Town Cinema
March 5-6, 2011: Hinamatsuri (Girls' Day Japanese Doll Festival)
April 1, 2011: JAMsj/Yu-Ai Kai Book Club

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Japanese American Museum of San Jose (JAMsj)
535 N. Fifth Street
San Jose, CA 95112
Tel: (408) 294-3138
Email: mail@jamsj.org