VNCS Summer Social 2018 (Tanabata Family Picnic) – July 7th

VNCS Summer Social
Tanabata (Star) Festival
Family Picnic
Esquimalt Gorge Park
Saturday July 7th
11am – 2pm

This event is open to all VNCS members and their friends. This event is less structured to allow folks to get to know each other better.

Please bring your own bento (lunch) to Esquimalt Gorge Park at 11:00am. The park has large picnic tables, lots of parking and full restroom facilities at the Gorge Waterway Nature House.

Make a wish to celebrate Tanabata

We’re pleased to provide tanzaku (coloured paper for writing wishes), origami paper for decorations and small bamboo for hanging the tanzaku that each family will be able to take home with them. Tanabata (Star Festival) –


Cool off with some Kakigori!

We’ll also be making kakigori (shaved ice dessert) for everyone. Kakigori –



Please direct questions to our organizers:

Kana Mercer


Don’t forget to wear your yukata or jinbe!


Cherry Blossom Festival at Art Gallery of Greater Victoria – March 18th

Cherry Blossom Festival at Art Gallery of Greater Victoria (AGGV)

This year’s Sakura: Cherry Blossom Festival will be hosted at AGGV as part of their Family Sunday.
Date: Sunday, March 18
Time: 1:00-4:00 PM
Location: Art Gallery of Greater Victoria (1040 Moss Street)
Admission by donation

All ages, everyone welcome! Join us for an afternoon of art making, performance and poetry!

A collaboration with the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Victoria Nikkei Cultural Society, City of Victoria and Haiku Arbutus. With support from Silk Road Tea, Jaga Silk and Ume Silk. Admission by donation for this special Family Sunday.

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED: Please contact Yukari Peerless at if you can help at the Cherry Blossom Festival. Many hands make light work! We thank you in advance.

VNCS Board Members Needed

The VNCS AGM is on Feb 4, 2018. In preparation for the new fiscal year we need to finalize the make up of the VNCS Board ( Here is why you should consider becoming a VNCS Board member!

The VNCS is a very vibrant, active and successful Japanese Cultural organization. Each year we continue to add new programs, hold special events or grow our established activities. Our Cultural Society compares quite favourably to other Nikkei organizations across Canada, which for the most part have a larger and more established Nikkei community. One of the reasons for our growth and success is the leadership provided by the VNCS Board. We have been fortunate to have dedicated and hard working Board members who believe in what the VNCS is doing. Although we have added new Board members in the past several years, there is still a need for more new Board members. One, to provide a break for some of our longer serving Board members and two, to bring in new energy and ideas to the VNCS Board. The time commitment is small as we only meet 8-9 times a year but the rewards and impact you can make can be big.

Are you looking to serve and make a difference? If you are interested or require more information please contact Tsugio Kurushima at

2018 VNCS Annual General Meeting (AGM)


Victoria Nikkei Cultural Society
2018 Annual General Meeting

Sunday, February 4th, 2018
Esquimalt Rec Centre, 527 Fraser Street.
(Craigflower Room which is just to the right of the rear entrance…also known as the dance studio.)
Registration – 9:30 am
AGM – 9:45 am – 11:45 am
Guest Speaker – 11:45 am – 12:45 pm
(Memberships can be created/renewed at the AGM)

Guest Speaker – Susanne Tabata on Japanese Canadian Artists Directory.

Details to come.

Mark your calendar!

2018 Mochi Tsuki Shinnen Kai and Potluck Dinner



Presented by the Victoria Nikkei Cultural Society, the Japanese Friendship Society and the Victoria Japanese Heritage Language School Society
Sunday, January 21, 2018
Esquimalt Rec Centre
3:00PM – 6:30PM

Please join us for a potluck dinner, entertainment and interactive participation including mochi-pounding and traditional games to celebrate this New Year.

Volunteer Help Needed – the old adage “many hands make light work” is best demonstrated at an event like this celebration day and we are looking for assistance from all groups with: Set-up, Kitchen Crew, Greeter, Mochi or 50/50 Sales, Food Table Monitors, Games and Take-down.

Contact Debbie Ibaraki at if you can help.

Live performances of Japanese Problem

Live performances of Japanese Problem

In 1942, over 8,000 Canadians were detained in barns at Hastings Park
—the effects, and the memories haunt us to this day.
JAPANESE PROBLEM is a title derived from the nomenclature of WWII, but containing in it the understanding that the citizens affected at the time were neither Japanese–they were overwhelmingly legal residents/citizens of Canada, nor problematic–with zero verifiable connections to activities against Canada.

JAPANESE PROBLEM invites an audience into a stall, which residents have turned into a temporary home and place of wonder, as they are filled with the uncertainty of their next destination.
The piece exists in the contemporary moment simultaneously, where evidence of Hastings Parks’s former tenants has been erased, where survivors are uncertain if they want their names included in a memorial; and where refugees to North America are being treated in a fashion that is terrifyingly familiar.

The event will take place at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria on Sunday, December 3, 2017 in the Spencer Mansion.

There will be 3 programs to choose from:
Program 1 2:00-3:20 pm (registration 1:45 pm)
Program 2 3:30-4:50 pm (registration 3:15 pm)
Program 3 6:00-7:20 pm (registration 5:45 pm)

The program will begin with registration in the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria lobby, with pre-performance Japanese refreshments and light snacks in the Kearly room and Mansion foyer. There will be a short presentation on the latest research by Landscapes of Injustice. The performance begins about 15 minutes into the program in the Spencer Room, at which point latecomers will not be able to enter so please ensure you arrive to register prior to the start of the program time.

Seats for the program is $30 per person. Seating is limited. Please indicate your first and second choice of times.

To guarantee your attendance, contact Michael Abe at

Due to the generosity of patrons, there are some seats available free of charge for youth and those on limited income. Contact Mike to request these seats.

For more information about the play, check out

150 Years and Continuing: Fighting for Justice on the Coast

“150 Years and Continuing: Fighting for Justice on the Coast” in Salt Spring Island Library

The Salt Spring Historical Society, the Salt Spring Archives, and the Japanese Garden Society are hosting an exhibition ‘150 Years and Continuing: Fighting for Justice on the Coast’ for the month of November in the Salt Spring Library’s Program Room.

Ten big panels of visuals and text will guide you through the history of the struggle of the First Nations and Asian Canadians who faced injustice, colonialism, and racial exclusion.

Two panels describe local Salt Spring stories of the First Nations and of the Iwasaki Family who used to own nearly 600 acres of land which was taken away from them after they were uprooted from island.

The exhibition was developed by an inter-university group called the Asian Canadians on Vancouver Island Project (ACVI) headed by Dr. John Price of the University of Victoria.

Upcoming talks during the month of the exhibition:
November 15th (Wed) 7pm – 8pm: The Uprooting of Japanese Canadians from Saltspring Island by Brian Smallshaw

November 25th (Sat) 3pm – 4pm: Historical Charcoal Pit Kilns on the Southern Gulf Islands as a legacy of Japanese Canadians on the Coast by the Japanese Garden Society

November 28th (Tues) 7pm – 7:30pm: The Story of the Murakami Family by Keiko Mary Murakami Kitagawa

‘These stories can be unsettling, challenging and even disorienting… we encourage everyone to stick with the discomfort and embrace Canada’s whole history so that we can move forward together toward true reconciliation and creating a Canada we all want to share.’ (ACVI project synopsis)