Japanese Language and Culture club plans their Cherry Blossom festival DC trip


From right to left, these lines roughly mean “today” “February 28” and “nice weather.”

Sammi Gibson, Daily Reporter

The Japanese Language and Culture club held presentations during their meeting last Thursday and a field trip planned for this semester to Washington, DC.

In the first presentation, students learned about one of Japan’s southernmost islands, Yakushima.

Club president Lizzy Overton gave the presentations on videos and pictures of the island’s features.

“What’s really neat about [Yakushima] is that it’s known for its beautiful forests … the forests themselves actually inspired famous artists and famous authors,” the second-year psychology student said. “The island itself is an entire city … less than 13,000 people … it’s a lot of family owned restaurants, family owned shops.”

Member Chase Otley, a second-year physics student, gave an informative speech about the martial art Sumo wrestling.

“In Sumo, people work on their leg strength, their balance, their flexibility, the whole goal is to not be tipped over and pushed from any side,” Otley said.

“Beyond the comedy and parody of what we have seen in America, there’s an actual culture, an actual sport, an actual ritual that is incredibly interesting,” he said.

The club is traveling to the Cherry Blossom festival in Washington, DC this spring to see the blossoming flowers.

“I love the beauty behind [cherry blossoms] as well the symbolism that they were given to America as a gift from the Japanese when we gave them a gift of a certain type of archery,” Overton said. “It just symbolizes a kind of peace between the two countries, and how we can kind of strive to have more world peace.”

The members said they are excited about bettering their learning of the Japanese language and culture with these events.

“I’m excited about improving my Japanese … and also, really interested about Japanese culture and the holidays, that’s something I didn’t really know about,” said member Moriah Thompson, second-year pre-med student.

The Japanese Club meets Thursdays at 2 p.m. in Careers 260.