Starting the New Year at historic Washington Place was welcome news to JASH members and guests. Over 200 attended the sold out reception. Hawaii Governor Neil Abercrombie invited the guests to his “official” home, calling attention to the many programs and services JASH provides to the community, including schools and children, in accomplishing its mission of promoting understanding and friendship between the people of U.S. and Japan with the special perspective of Hawaii. Gourmet food catered by Neiman Marcus with beer donated by Aloha Beer provided perfect complement to the stately mansion as backdrop for starting the New Year on a high note. International Sake Association (Kokusai Sake Kai) gave private tastings of sake from the 2013 National Sake Tasting event.
Sponsor Stanford Carr welcomed the guests noting it was the eighth straight year he has sponsored the event, and he looks forward to many more. New JASH Chair Daniel Dinell of Hilton Grand Vacations gave his own New Year greetings, pledging to continue with the Society’s mission and programs, and quoting from a student whose life was transformed by JASH. Later, Chair Dinell joined Governor Abercrombie, Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell, new Pacific Fleet Commander Admiral Harry Harris, and Japanese Consul General Toyoei Shigeeda in the traditional breaking of the sake cask, kagamiwari ceremony. Consul General Shigeeda offered the sake toast, pointing to JASH’s past accomplishments to include the relief support provided to victims of the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami, and pledging future collaboration. Sake and implements were donated by Mr. Teru Kishii and The Cherry Company.
JASH would like to thank Stanford Carr, other supporters and donors, and the many volunteers who assisted with the reception. More photos available on the JASH Facebook.