Asian Cultural Experience: Updates & Events
Asian Cultural Experience (ACE) sends out its newsletter seasonally (spring, summer, fall, winter). You can read this in your email or click on the heading to go to the main site and view older issues. You may also receive occasional shorter bulletins regarding special events
Dear ACE friends,
A belated Happy New Year! We’ve got a few updates for you.
Republic Cafe: Ownership, Cultural Center/Museum, and Future Plans
You may have seen the KSBW report about the Republic Cafe fire in October 2022. And perhaps you read the Dec. 2022 MCWeekly article “Chinatown Rising,” which we consider to be an accurate representation of the current status of Chinatown and the Republic Cafe. We do feel a little like the phoenix rising out of the flames. While the building was damaged by the fire, it appears to be salvageable for our future use. After the fire, the City of Salinas began to finalize the purchase of the property. They have notified ACE of their desire for a long term lease and exterior restoration of the building to historic standards. However, the City is not able to guarantee any commitments until Escrow closes in
March [update: July]. As always, ACE is committed to interior restoration of the building, development of educational and exhibition programs, and operation of the Republic Cafe Cultural Center and Museum.
ACE will continue to update our concerned supporters about the status of our relationship with the Republic Café after the City’s acquisition. We are glad to have this collaborative relationship with the City.
Asian Festival, April 29, 2023
Planning for the 14th Annual Salinas Asian Festival is well underway. Scheduled for April 29, this year’s festival will be hosted by the Chinese Association of Salinas, which always presents a wonderful produce sale along with exhibits, lectures, entertainment, and food. We are also excited to include in the festivities a street fair (on California St.) with open-air booths and tables for arts, crafts, or sales of books and other items, as well as for organizations who want to connect with the public. ACE’s book, Our Salinas Chinatown, will be on sale at the festival, a project supported by the Arts Council for Monterey County.
If you are interested in having a booth at the fair, contact Cathy Chavez-Miller: firstname.lastname@example.org or Larry Hirahara at email@example.com. You can also email ACE at firstname.lastname@example.org
Further Festival details will be announced in our Spring Newsletter, early in April, and you will also find details on the Asian Festival page of our website.
We are happy to announce that ACE has secured a site on a web publishing platform designed specifically for sharing digital archival collections. This launches an ongoing project to reorganize and catalog our growing collection of images and objects that document the multicultural history and culture of Salinas Chinatown—portions of which will be available for public viewing and research. We are currently uploading images to the site, and hope to have it available for viewing in April. We’ll keep you updated.
Lunar New Year 2023
Recently, ACE celebrated the Lunar New Year of the Rabbit with our partners at CSUMB. Thanks to all who gave their support and attended. Here are a few photos from that fun event:
Upcoming Events by ACE Partners and Friends:
UCSC’s Humanities Institute presents the California premiere of the film Resettlement: Chicago Story, at Santa Cruz MAH on March 1. Learn more about the film screening on the Humanities Institute website. The event is co-sponsored by the Watsonville-Santa Cruz Japanese American Citizens League and will serve as this year’s Day of Remembrance. The evening will commence with a special performance by the Watsonville Taiko Group, followed by a screening of the film, a preview of the larger web experience, and a Q&A discussion with some of the project’s core creators. We hope to see you there.
Assistant Prof. Chrissy Yee Lau will discuss her book, New Women of Empire, focusing on the story of Lily Satow, a YWCA Secretary who attended the 1926 Conference at Asilomar Hotel & Conference Grounds. The talk will take place on Saturday, March 4, 2-3 pm, at the Dodge Chapel Auditorium.
Support the Salinas YBA (Young Buddhists Association)! Attend their Curry Feed at the Salinas Buddhist Temple on April 16, 11:30-1:00:
Joyce Lowe of the Chinese American Citizen’s Alliance (CACA) will be hosting a film screening of Felicia Lowe’s documentary of San Francisco Chinatown for KQED’s “Neighborhoods: the Hidden Cities of San Francisco.” Screening at the Buddhist Temple in Salinas on Saturday, April 22, at 2 pm. Parking at the Temple, 14 California St. in Salinas.
ACE looks forward to a season of change in Chinatown. We now have weekly open office hours at 21 Soledad St., Suite A (Wed. and Thurs. 10-2, Fri. 11-2); we continue to receive grants for historical, cultural, and neighborhood projects; we work with service-learning students and partner with many local organizations, presenting opportunities for historical pop-up events and exhibits; and we continue to work for revitalization of Chinatown and a community based cultural center and museum in the Republic Cafe building. If you are interested in supporting our efforts, please join us! Help us to develop and expand our programs! Become a member and volunteer and/or donate to ACE today.
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