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Telling Our Stories: Japanese Americans in the San Fernando Valley, 1910's - 1970's

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Japanese Celebrations

Although Japanese Americans wanted to be accepted in America, many felt strongly to hold to their Japanese cultural traditions, such as the Obon Festival, Boys Day, Girls Day, and New Year celebrations. New Year's day was especially looked forward to, as it was one of the few days they did not work.

“We used to make mochi every year in the traditional way. We’d stoke a fire, boil water, put the rice on top of the steaming water and cook the rice. My family would all get together on New Years’ Day or New Years’ Eve and make mochi...The first time me and my cousins did it, we singed our eyebrows and eyelashes. ”

~Bill Watanabe

Based on this original

Making Mochi: A New Year's Tradition circa 1955
uploaded by CSUNAsianAmericanStudies
Photograph contributed by Bill Watanabe. Names of people: Katsuye Watanabe and unknown friends Date: Circa 1955 Place: Granada Hills, CA, U.S.A. Photograph by: Unknown Photo size: Unknown Description: Katsuye Watanabe ... More »

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