On Saturday, November 6, a group of students from Providence Christian College went on an Avodah Excursion to Little Tokyo for a day of history, great food, and Japanese culture.
Students visited the Japanese American National Museum, which included a World War II memorial. Josh Dykstra, a junior, was able to speak with two World War II veterans about what it was like to fight in the war and about their loyalty to the United States.
Inside the museum, students found many pictures and artifacts that portrayed the struggle that the Japanese endured in an effort to live peacefully in America. Many Japanese people were put into concentration camps during World War II and the museum featured many pictures of the camps as well as artifacts and an actual building that people lived in at the camps. According to excerpts in the museum, these concentration camps were not as intense as the Nazi concentration camps. Mayra Martinez, a freshman, shared with other students the story of her Japanese relatives and their experiences in the concentration camps during World War II.
Following the museum visit, students explored Little Tokyo’s shops and restaurants. Freshman, Sophie Lutz, who has a love for Japanese culture, was able to practice her Japanese with some of the store owners. For lunch, students were required to try Sushi, a new experience for some. For dessert, many enjoyed the popular treat, Mochi and pastries, that had sweet red bean fillings.
As the day came to an end, many of the students discussed the possibility of taking the Metro to Little Tokyo in the near future.