Events

June 1, 2012

Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month brings Airmen, civilians, cultures together

Tags:
by Airman 1st Class Grace Lee
56th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

The Samahang Bayanihan Dance Group, representing the Samahang Bayanihan Organization of Arizona, performs for the audience during the Asian-Pacific American Heritage luncheon at Club Five-Six May 23. The group performed HolaHola Ka’a Hawaiian Dance which represents a long and relaxing ride.

There are many commemorative months that are celebrated every year, but on May 23 Airmen and civilians came together to celebrate Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month over food and entertainment at Club Five Six on Luke Air Force Base.

Asian-Pacific American Heritage is a celebration of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the United States. The term Asian-Pacific includes all of the Asian continent and Pacific islands of Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia.

Similar to how other commemorative months originated, Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month started out as a congressional bill and wasn’t always a month-long celebration. In 1992, President George Bush signed an extension making the weeklong celebration into a monthlong celebration. Then, it was signed into law for May to be designated as Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month.

The month of May was chosen to recognize the first Japanese, who immigrated to the U.S. May 6, 1843. It also marks the anniversary of the transcontinental railroad; the majority of the workers who built the railroad were Chinese immigrants.

Because of those who paved the way through their own sacrifices, people of Asian-Pacific background have a month where they can celebrate and educate people about their diverse cultures.

For Alma DeGarriz, 56th Equipment Maintenance Squadron unit programs coordinator, Asian-Pacific Heritage Month is more than breaking bread.

“It makes people more aware of different cultures,” DeGarriz said. “It also benefits the local community and gives them the opportunity to show their support through dance.”

During the event, four dance groups from the local area voluntarily performed for the celebration. The groups who danced were the Mabuhay, the Dudus Chamorritas, a dance team from Arathi School of Dance and the Samahang Bayanihan dance group.

“My favorite performance was from the Arathi School of Dance,” said Airman 1st Class Steven Kylebrown, 56th Medical Support Squadron medical logistics. “I liked how the hand movements seem to tell a story.”

To Kylebrown, attending the luncheon also gave him the opportunity to learn what each dance meant.

“It was interesting to know each dance had its own meaning and history behind it,” Kylebrown said.

While the performers danced, attendees were served eggrolls, fried wonton, fried rice with eggs and vegetables, huli huli chicken, kailua pork, spring rolls, chow mein noodles and for dessert pineapple upside down cake.

Toward the end of the commemoration, guest speaker Dina Steinberg, Banner Estrella Medical Center human resources officer, spoke about how one shouldn’t evaluate someone based on their appearance or name.

Steinberg expressed her definition of diversity by focusing more on the individual and less on gender, religion and race.

“We should celebrate and honor people based on their uniqueness,” Steinberg said. “What separates every individual on this earth is .1 percent of their DNA, thus no one person is alike.”

Since no one person is alike, Steinberg likes to look upon what each person brings to the table.

“It’s more about each individual’s thoughts, education and life experience, which makes them different from one another,” Steinberg said. “And today, I want to honor and celebrate them.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Pg-3

Honorary commanders bid farewell

Brig. Gen. Scott Pleus, 56th Fighter Wing commander, speaks to the outgoing honorary commanders Sept. 17 at Club Five Six. The Honorary Commander Program fosters relationships between local civic and business leaders and base p...
 
 

News Briefs September 26, 2014

CPTS closed The finance office is closed Monday and Thursday. It will be open regular business hours, 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. For more information, call 1st Lt. William Liaw at 623-856-6035. Comprehensive Airman Fitness Comprehensive Airman Fitness Training is Oct. 14 through 16. It is a three-day course for Airmen...
 
 

Thunderbolt of the Week

Senior Airman Jordan Provencher-Olaes 56th Communications Squadron Network infrastructure technician   Hometown: Chandler, Arizona Years in service: Two Family: Parents, Bridget and Rustico Olaes; brothers, Devon and Ethan Provencher Inspirations: My parents gave me the strength and courage to strive in all areas of life; CS leaders’ mentorship has inspired me to be the very...
 

 
Airman 1st Class Cory Gossett

POW/MIA day commemorated at Luke

Airman 1st Class Cory Gossett Members of the 56th Fighter Wing Honor Guard perform the folding of the flag at the conclusion of the POW/MIA retreat ceremony Sept. 19 at Luke Air Force Base. A warm, breezy late summer afternoon ...
 
 

Chaplain’s thoughts …

Luke Air Force Base held a ceremony to honor America’s prisoners of war and missing in action Sept. 19. There are 83,189 personnel still unaccounted for from conflicts dating back to WWII, according to the Defense Prisoner of War and Missing Personnel Office. These numbers represent countless American families who grieve because they do not...
 
 
Senior Airman Grace Lee

TAP changes to better prepare Airmen for civilian life

Senior Airman Grace Lee Dawn Reynolds, American Veterans representative, speaks to a Transition Assistance Program class. The Luke Air Force Base Airman and Family Readiness Center Transition Assistance Program has recently und...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin