Japan, Port of San Diego To Celebrate
Friendship Aboard USS Midway Museum
Following the dedication of friendship cherry tree-planting along the Embarcadero next to the USS Midway Museum on March 29, a Sakura Festival will be held aboard the USS Midway Museum from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. There will be no charge to attend the flight deck Festival (beginning at 1 p.m. that day only).
The planting of 31 Pink Cloud cherry trees on the Embarcadero and on Shelter Island will honor the 2012 Japan-U.S. Cherry Blossom Centennial. One hundred years ago 3,020 cherry trees were sent by Japan to be planted in Washington, D.C. They now are an internationally recognized landmark. The planting in San Diego is part of a nationwide cherry blossom planting initiative and a joint project of the Consulate General of Japan in Los Angeles and the Unified Port of San Diego.
San Diego’s Pink Cloud cherry trees are expected to reach 12 to 16 feet in height and are known for their deep red and light pink blooms.
“San Diego was chosen as a planting site due to the sister city relations with Yokohama and the presence of many friends in Japan, including service members affiliated with Japan,” said Consul General Jun Niimi, of the Consulate General of Japan.
The Sakura Festival aboard Midway will feature local Japanese entertainment. In addition, Sakura origami demonstrations will be conducted by the Japan Society of San Diego and Tijuana. Event attendees will be able to try their hand at origami creations.
Complimentary Japanese food samples in part donated by leading Japanese food providers will be served, courtesy to S&B International, House Foods America Corp, Kikkoman Sales USA, Otafuku Foods and the Japanese Consulate.
One, featuring curry, has a long tradition with the Navy in Japan, dating back to 1908 when the Imperial Japanese Navy started serving curry for its nutritional value. To this day the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force serves curry every Friday on each of its ships. Curry is the favorite dish for many Japanese school children, as well as Consul General Niimi.
“This marks a great day in the history of the USS Midway,” said museum President & CEO Mac McLaughlin. “Midway was the first American carrier homeported in a foreign city, Yokosuka, Japan, and now more than 40 years later Japan and America celebrate a close relationship based on mutual support on Midway’s flight deck.”