“Avast, Ahoy, and Ohayoo: Early Adventures in Japan-U.S. Relations” was a special lecture commemorating The 30th Anniversary of the Seattle Cherry Blossom and Japanese Cultural Festival at the 31st annual event in 2006. I was honored to selected for “The Consul General’s Award” a certificate of commendation presented by Consul General Kazuo Tanaka for “contribution and distinguished achievements in promoting mutual understanding and friendship between Japan and the United States” including service as a member of the Board of Directors of the Seattle Cherry Blossom and Japanese Cultural Festival in the 1980s. When asked if I could participate as a speaker at the festival in 2006 I decided to incorporate lectures I had given about the Lady Washington and its 1791 voyage to Japan, Castaway Otokichi and the first Japanese to arrive in the Pacific Northwest, Ranald MacDonald the adventurer and intentional castaway who became the first native speaking English teacher in Japan in 1848, as highlights from the early period of US-Japan relations.
It was great to be back at the Seattle Cherry Blossom and Japanese Cultural Festival after periodic visits in the 1990s following a very active involvement in the 1980s. Also receiving the Consul General's Award in 2006 was David Yamaguchi who was co-author of the book,"The Orphan Tsunami of 1700." And it was great to see again King TV's Lori Matsukawa as festival celebrity MC who came to Seattle from Portland in the early 1980s about the same time that I did.