To celebrate our Annual General Meeting as well as our 65th Anniversary, we gathered in person at the Jay Heritage Center in Rye, New York on May 18, 2022. The Jay Heritage Center is a non-profit guardian of the Jay Estate, a 23-acre park and home to a peacemaker, anti-slavery advocate, and American Founding Father, John Jay. The grandson of John Jay, John Clarkson Jay, was a friend with Commodore Perry whose famous Black ships opened Japan from isolation in 1853.
Over 65 attendees, including our honorary guest, Mme. Ishikawa, started the afternoon with a curated history of the house and tour of the recently restored gardens. The garden tour was followed by the induction of officers for the 2022 – 2024 term, a prosecco toast to our 65th Anniversary, and an obento lunch served on the veranda on long tables donned with yellow and blue tablecloths reminding us of solidarity with Ukraine. An arrangement of seashells ran down the tables, reminiscent of John Clarkson Jay’s study of seashells (conchology) that started while he lived on this property in Rye. Door prizes and dessert were enjoyed by all. A rainbow cake made by the famous Carlo’s Bake Shop (from the television series Cake Boss) was reminiscent of hope, equality, promise and new beginnings.
At the luncheon, our chapter presented a monetary gift to the Japan Society of Fairfield County to support their efforts in planting an allée of cherry trees at the Jay Heritage Center in the fall of 2022.