New Orlean Japan Fest and the Conferment Ceremony in Cerebration of Former President of Japan Club of New Orleans, Robert Turner (Oct. 6th)

 The Japan Club of New Orleans and the New Orleans Museum of Art, along with the Consulate-General of Japan in Nashville, hosted the 23rd Annual Japan Fest on Saturday, October 6th. The festival opened with a performance by Kaminari Taiko, followed by opening remarks from festival Emcee Greg Tokuyama, Honorary Consul of Japan in Louisiana Donna Fraiche, Consul General Hiroyuki Kobayashi, and the New Orleans Museum of Art’s Deputy Director for Curatorial Affairs and Curator of Asian Art Lisa Rotondo-McCord. In his opening remarks, Consul General Kobayashi also presented the prestigious Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Rays, on Mr. Robert Turner of the Japan Club. Mr. Turner was recognized for his devotion of over 25 years to the New Orleans Japan Club, and the other extensive contributions he has made to the deepening of friendship and mutual understanding between Japan and Louisiana.
 Guests at the Japan Fest were able to enjoy many cultural performances, such as taiko drumming, Minyo dance, Iaido, Kendo, Jujitsu, Karate, and Aikido martial arts performances, and a demonstration of Zen Buddhist chanting and meditation. They could also participate in Japanese arts and crafts, learn to play Go, tour the Japanese art gallery and the Japanese garden, learn how to properly wear a kimono, and even try on a samurai armor!
 Following the festival, a reception was held to honor Mr. Robert Turner’s decoration of the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Rays. Friends and family members of Mr. Turner’s, as well as long time colleagues in Japan Club and other organizations, gathered together to celebrate the decoration and share their congratulations. Consul-General Kobayashi spoke on Mr. Turner’s continued dedication towards bridging the Japanese and American communities in Louisiana.