Nisei Week is Here!

For the 72nd time, Nisei Week is about to kick off in Little Tokyo!  Founded as a way to bring in business after the Great Depression, the festival was touted as “an instrument not only to revive and revitalize Little Tokyo’s economic base, but to expose the non-Japanese audience out there to the Nisei’s message that the successors to the Issei were a generation of Americans.”   Nisei Week also functioned to create ethnic solidarity, seeking to bring the Nisei generation back to their cultural roots. Today, Nisei Week is open to anyone to celebrate the unique characteristics of Japanese and Japanese American culture.

Nisei Week features various events like the ever popular Grand Parade, sports tournaments, baby shows, the Tanabata Festival and a gyoza eating contest! To celebrate the upcoming event, we share some pictures of the Nisei Week Grand Parade from 1980:

Picture of Pat Morita, Saachiko and Yuki Shimoda celebrating Nisei Week and the premiere of “Hito Hata,” Visual Communications’ first feature length film.

Elderly and kimono-clad ladies perform a dance in the parade.

Young girls also put on a performance.

An impressively decorated float passes by with Taiko drums, representing the restaurant Horikawa.

Darlene Kuba and Ellen Kojima also ride a fancy car through the streets of Little Tokyo.

A band parade, marching through Little Tokyo.

We at VC are especially excited for the Tanabata Festival.  What are you looking forward to seeing during Nisei Week this year?

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