Annual CJAS/JANL Mochitsuki in Japantown

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SAN FRANCISCO — The following announcement is from the Center for Japanese American Studies and Japanese American National Library:

Tradition must go on! It’s the 42nd annual mochitsuki time! All of you and your friends are invited to join us on Tuesday, Dec. 27, at Christ United Presbyterian Church’s social hall, 1700 Sutter St. (at Laguna Street) in Japantown.

We’ll start at 11 a.m. and continue until the final mochi is formed around 3 p.m. We can use willing hands from 9 a.m. to help with preparations. Mochigome (rice) is donated by George Okamoto of Nomura and Co.

As always, everyone is encouraged to participate in the pounding of the rice, shaping of the mochi cakes, and eating and socializing all afternoon. Participants can purchase the mochi to take home. Help us recruit mochi pounders. We need all the muscles we can find.

We pound the old-fashioned way — by hand. Issei did it, Nisei did it, and Sansei do it. We want Yonsei and Gosei to continue the uniquely Japanese American cultural custom. Round up all your young generations of offspring and relatives. Once they see the mochitsuki, they will get hooked.

The Japanese American National Library is carrying on the tradition established by the Center for Japanese American Studies. Naturally, it’s the same mochi — the softest sweet mochi in the world — for which CJAS has been known.

Tell your friends and bring your entire extended family to our annual year-end festivity and perpetuate a fun part of our Nikkei cultural heritage. Any questions?  Call Karl Matsushita at (415) 567-5006.

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