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The City of Saratoga celebrated Asian Pacific Heritage Month by honoring two well recognized organizations inSilicon Valley.  On May 21, Mayor Emily Lo presented a proclamation to the Organization of Chinese American Women – Silicon Valley Chapter, which was founded in 1986. With a membership of about 200 members, the OCAW-SVC’s goals are to integrate Chinese American women into the mainstream of American society and to encourage engagement in community services.  Present at the City Council chambers to receive the honors werePresident Sophia Yang, accompanied by members Cynthia Chang, Lisa Lu, Aichu Wang, Rose Cheng, Yura Shieu, Joanna Yun and Nai Hsueh.  The majority of the members are from Taiwan originally but the organization welcomes any others with similar goals to join them. Many members serve on local commissions and volunteer for many non-profit organizations. Nai Hsueh is a Board Director on the Santa Clara Valley Water District and Cynthia Chang is a Trustee on Los Gatos-Saratoga High School District. www.ocaw-svc.org

Happily receiving proclamation from City of Saratoga City Council were members of the Organization of Chinese American Women –Silicon Valley Chapter

Happily receiving proclamation from City of Saratoga City Council were members of the Organization of Chinese American Women –Silicon Valley Chapter

Also recognized that day was another women’s group of Asian Americans, Chi Am Circle, with Presidents Paulette Curby and Sylvia Eng representing the organization.  Long recognized for its many service projects for the community, this 120 member organization has for the past 50 years, enlisted Asian American women who wish to contribute to community causes.  Its premier project has been to award thousands of dollars to high school seniors with grants for their college education. On stage to be recognized were Chi Am Circle members Carolyn Jow, Cleo Jong, Sharon Lai, Maria Lu, Clara Lee, Helen Kwan, and Beverly Harada, to just name a few representing the club that day.  www.chiamcircle.org

Chi Am Circle women’s club members came in force to Saratoga City Council chambers to receive proclamation of recognition..

Chi Am Circle women’s club members came in force to Saratoga City Council chambers to receive proclamation of recognition..

Also recognized that day was Reiko Iwanaga who has served with dedication and diligence for most of the Japanese community’s events and been a devoted and dedicated volunteer at many of the Japanese cultural festivals and has been an avid supporter of CATS, an organization porting supAsian American arts and artists.activities for the past 30 years. She event plans for many of the Obon and other Japanese cultural festivals and has been an avid supporter of CATS, an organization supporting Asian American arts and artists.

Family members rooting her on were Ashley, Keats, Courtney, Monroe, Ryan and Meena Iwanaga.  

Japanese community leader Reiko Iwanaga was congratulated by  family members at Saratoga Council meeting.

Japanese community leader Reiko Iwanaga was congratulated by family members at Saratoga Council meeting.

OH HAPPY DAYS

Big birthdays are a time to celebrate, and the passage of time for Muriel Kao was indeed a reason for her friends to herald her longevity at Chef Chu’s of Los Altos.  The Chef, Lawrence Chu himself, came in with champagne flutes for all to toast the Silicon Valley leader herself.  To belie the myth that people lose their memories fast when they reached a certain age, Muriel cited special memorable experiences with each guest there, some from over 60 years ago. She presented each guest with a photo collage momento of friendships formed many years ago with pictures that dated way way back in time.

Muriel Kao celebrates birthday with Chef Lawrence Chu and hostesses Pauline Fong, Gerrye Wong and Pearl Lee

Muriel Kao celebrates birthday with Chef Lawrence Chu and hostesses Pauline Fong, Gerrye Wong and Pearl Lee

HAWAII CALLS

In Hawaii, former King Kamehameha School principal, Sandy Young was feted on her birthday with a Honolulucondo patio party for over 50 friends and family, as hosted by sister Sylvia and Ronald Young, and California friends Ken and Sandra Joe.  Singing and dancing by Mona and Ron Young ensued after enjoyment of a buffet table of special Hawaiian favorites prepared by the hostesses, Chicago friend Yoshi, Lorene Ching, Kathy Wong, Bunny Look. Enjoying the Hawaiian hospitality were visiting California friends Joe and Cathy Wu, Pat and Howard Lum, Jeanette Yee, Patsy Ja and Dali Jones.

 

Fans visit with Hawaiian Diva Nohelani Cypriano at Hilton Hawaiian Village. Standing l to r Pat Lum, Jeanette Yee, Nohelani,  Patsy Ja Seated:  Sandra Young, Sylvia Young, Dali Jones

Fans visit with Hawaiian Diva Nohelani Cypriano at Hilton Hawaiian Village. Standing l to r Pat Lum, Jeanette Yee, Nohelani, Patsy Ja Seated: Sandra Young, Sylvia Young, Dali Jones

Music is always a part of a visit to Hawaii as it is all around you along with the swaying Palm trees, the on-and-off rain showers.  Had the pleasure of catching favorite Hawaiian Diva Nohelani Cypriano at the Hilton Hawaiian Villagewhere she belted out not only Hawaiian favorites but country music as well. Her winning personality and lyrical voice thrilled the beach walkers strolling by behind her stage as well as the diners in her outdoor audience.   The next night we went to 53 By the Sea seafood specialty restaurant and met owner Shigemitsu Takami along with featured vocalist Cathy Foy and her versatile pianist Noly Paa.  Foy’s repertoire of songs from Broadway to opera to favorites of the 1950s music was a joy to listen to as well as see her in live stage.

Seen at 53 by the Seat, owner Shigemitsu Takami, vocalist Cathy Foy and pianist Nola Paa.

Seen at 53 by the Seat, owner Shigemitsu Takami, vocalist Cathy Foy and pianist Nola Paa.

What can be better than sitting in an open air restaurant listening to the live voices of these talented Hawaiian entertainers eating puupuus and enjoying a tropical drink?  

Sandy Young has birthday bash with Honolulu friends.

Sandy Young has birthday bash with Honolulu friends.

The only thing better I can think of would be to golf on the pristine green wide fairways of Ko Olina Golf Club away from the crowds of Waikiki. This lady bug themed course always has a kind breeze to cool one off, and for women golfers, its large golf shop is shopper’s heaven.  General Manager Greg Nichols is a handsome white haired fellow with an ever ready welcoming smile which got very excited when telling us of Hawaii’s own golf heroine Michelle Wie’s latest championship win just a month before.  He recalls watching her grow up on the golf courses and shares the pride her followers feel in seeing her find her way to championship wins now. Sometimes when one visits a well-known course like Ko Olina, one feels intimidated by a haughty staff but the fellows here were most welcoming from drop off to cart return and we felt very comfortable with their eagerness to please and make us feel at home. Thanks Ladybug for a wonderful challenging but enjoyable golf experience at Ko Olina.

Ko Olina General Manager welcomes Californians to his well renowned golf course.

Ko Olina General Manager welcomes Californians to his well renowned golf course.

HATS OFF TO THE WOMEN

Pacific Asian American Women Bay Area Hotel Coalition awarded its 2014 Monarch Leadership Awards  at San Francisco’s Intercontinental Hotel to the following:  Senior Program Officer of Thomas Long Foundation Aimee Sueko Eng, AYPAL Policy Director Tiffany Eng, Asian Pacific Fund Scholarship & Donor Relations Manager Golda Hernandez, Weaving Through Change Owner Nwe Do and First Republic Bank Office Manager Ma Lee Mary Tsui.  Congratulations ladies.

Fremont Council Member Suzanne Lee Chan was named 2014-15 president of the Asian Pacific American Municipal Officials (APAMO) constituency group at its annual meting at the National League of Cities/ Congressional City Conference n Washington D.C.   APAMO’s mission is to provide Asian Pacific American municipal officials and their colleagues with a forum to share ideas and develop leadership experience.   Established in 1985, APAMO’s members strive to share their experiences in government with other Asian Pacific Americans and local officials

COMING ON STAGE

The kiddies will take the stage  at Self Help for the Elderly’s 2014 Longevity Gala June 14 at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco airport in a gala fashion show presented by May Bakken and her crew.  Recipients this year of the Friend of the Elderly Award 2014 were Eric Cheung and Oliver Ko, Veritas Investments, Inc. and Verizon Foundation, announced General Co-Chairs Helina Au and Alicia Fang Chang. Tickets still available to support the good work ofSelf Help for the Elderly, so call 415 677 7668 or find info at www.selfhelpelderly.org/gala.

The music Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein composed for “Show Boat”will go down in time for many music lovers. San Franciscans are privileged to be the major city opening the Opera’s new  summer season on June 1.  Starring in this lavish production will be stars from opera, Broadway, theater, television, film and dance such as Heidi Stober, Michael Todd Simpson, Patricia Racette, Angela Renee Simpson, Morris Robinson, Harriet Harris, Kirsten Wyatt, John Bolton and Sharon McKnight.   This dramatic story showing the lives on the Mississippi in the 1880s is both a poignant LOVE STORY AND A POWERFUL REMINDER OF America’s bitter legacy of racism.  The show will run through July 2 with all performances featuring the San Francisco Opera Orchestra and Chorus and takes place in the famous San Francisco War Memorial Opera House.  Visit sfopera.com or call Box office 415-864 3330. 

Broadway By the Bay in Redwood City is bringing “In The Heights” to its Fox Theatre stage June 20-July 6. This is a story of a community in New York’s Washington Heights neighborhood which is on the brink of change, full of hopes, dreams and pressures and struggles of deciding which traditions to keep and which to leave behind.  Broadway By The Bay was established as San Mateo Community Theatre in 1965 and is the sole musical theatre company between San Francisco and Palo Alto producing large-scale musical productions using  local talents.  Ticket info:broadwaybythebay.org; 650-579-5565

JUST OUT

CHINA DOLLS is Lisa See’s latest novel which should be on everyone’s book shelf soon.  It’s the story of Chinatown entertainment world in the 1930s where many of the fictional characters reminded me of some real life performers of that era in San Francisco’s many all Chinese night clubs. See will be in Bay Area for book signings:

Come meet and have her autograph your copy at Keplers Bookstore at Menlo Park  June 10; 7:30; Book Passage Book Store in Corte Madera June 11 noon; Book Shop Santa Cruz June 11 7:30; Towne Center Books, Pleasanton, CA June 12 at 11:00 a.m. and San Francisco Public Library June 12 6:30 pm.

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