E-Mail Forum
  Events Planned to Remember El Cerrito and Richmond Japanese Communities
October 15, 2010

Treadway: Events planned to remember El Cerrito and Richmond Japanese communities
Chris Treadway
Posted: 10/14/2010 11:41:45 AM PDT
Updated: 10/14/2010 11:42:56 AM PDT

WHEN A photography and history exhibit on local Japanese nurseries was being planned at the Richmond Art Center it soon became obvious that there was more to be done to tell a story that had gone largely unacknowledged in Richmond. I know so many community neighbors and facets of Richmond that care about this story, so as we started planning the table got bigger and bigger," said Emily Anderson, RAC's exhibitions manager and co-curator of the "Blossoms and Thorns" exhibit.
After preparations began early this year the families of the pioneer flower growers became involved, as did the National Park Service and the city's Neighborhood Public Art Project.
The result: The recognition of the people who built homes, established a community, raised families and for more than a century raised flowers as a livelihood in Richmond and El Cerrito has grown beyond a single exhibit to a series of events.
Related events have included a well-attended screening last weekend of films dealing with the internment camps where Japanese-Americans were sent during World War II and a bus tour today and again on Oct. 23 of historic sites related to the nurseries.
Events continue from 1-3 p.m. Saturday with a talk with historian and exhibit curator Donna Graves and filmmaker Kenneth Kokka. who will screen his award-winning film, The Chessmen, filmed at the Sakai nurseries.
The afternoon at the Richmond Art Center, 2540 Barrett Ave., will include a performance of "When Dreams Are Interrupted" by the Purple Moon Dance Project.
For more details about "Blossoms and Thorns" events call the RAC at 510-620-1252 or Michelle Seville at 510-620-6952.
To get details or register for the bus tour, call the Rosie the Riveter/World War II Home Front National Historical Park, 510-232-5050.