Kim Hayashi, Keiro Staff Member
For most Japanese Americans, the end of the summer stealthily approaches through obon festivals, Nisei Week and the August/September reminder that we all need to continue to take the time to enjoy ourselves, our culture, and the many wonders of Las Vegas.
Yes, I said it – the wonders of Las Vegas. With so many things to enjoy, Vegas has become a cultural watering place for Japanese Americans. We vacation there, we golf there, we party there, we eat there (YUM!) and strangely enough, we play tournaments there!
For many, you have just returned from the Hollywood Dodgers Tournament, where you were able to watch your children and grandchildren (or even yourself and your friends) play basketball in the LV gyms where you have to take a blanket to keep warm while you escape the 105 degree heat. You enjoy family time as you cruise the strip, go shopping, hang out at the pool, and even take a gander at the Fremont Street Experience. Then the kids head off to the dance and it’s time to hit the tables, sleep, and then prepare yourself to get ready to join the rest of us back in September for LVI weekend! (where I swear, my boyfriend really does sit in a blanket while he watches my games!)
Though disappointing that it signals the end of summer, this is a time of year I always look forward to. Not because I want to enjoy Sin City for all it’s glory, but because these tournaments gather everyone in one place to participate in something so meaningful and foundational to our JA culture… and it is a gigantic family reunion. There are many reasons to go to Las Vegas, but the benefit for me is I get to travel to Las Vegas to be with friends, family and a large part of our community to not only have fun, but exercise too! (which makes it so much easier to enjoy those buffets!)
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