Seattle Center to Host “A Day of Remembrance – a Day of Preparedness” in Honor of One-Year Anniversary of Japan Earthquake and Tsunami

This Sunday marks the one-year anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami, the 9.0 magnitude quake and resulting tsunami that killed more than 15,000 people., the Consulate-General of Japan in Seattle and Seattle Center are hosting a special community event this Sunday, March 11.

The free event will begin at 10:00 a.m. with an opening ceremony at the Fisher Pavilion, which will feature musical performances by singer Fumi Tagata and koto ensemble Koto no Wa.

Following the entertainment there will be exhibits and presentations by more than a dozen local and national emergency management groups and nonprofits, all of whom will share their experiences with their recovery efforts in Japan. The groups will also share their knowledge on how to prepare for natural disasters in the Pacific Northwest.

Attendees will have the opportunity to also learn about the ways they can still assist Japan today. The Consulate-General of Japan in Seattle will host a special screening of the documentary “Gambappe Hula Girls!” at 12:00 p.m., as well as a photography exhibition focusing on the disaster and recovery. There will also be a presentation of children’s messages of hope from the Tohoku area.

At 2:00 p.m. a memorial service and Buddhist ceremony will take place just north of the International Fountain at the Kobe Bell, in honor of the victims of the earthquake and tsunami. Following the ceremony the public will have the opportunity to ring the bell. At approximately 2:46 p.m., a moment of silence will be observed, which corresponds to the exact time of the disaster in Japan on March 11, 2011.

Dignitaries and elected officials scheduled to speak include Consul-General of Japan Kiyokazu Ota, Lt. Governor Brad Owen, Congressman Jim McDermott, Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn, Seattle City Council President Sally Clark, and Port of Seattle Commission President Gael Tarleton.

The Buddhist ceremony will be conducted by Rev. Taijo Imanaka.  Rev. Taijo has been dispatched from the head temple of the Shingon Buddhist Temple at Koyasan to carry out this service.  He previously lived is Seattle, preaching at the Koyasan Buddhist Church.

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