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Dogwood Initiative 2001 8. Dogwood Planting Ceremony

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8. Dogwood Planting Ceremony

A "Dogwood Planting Ceremony" was held along the west bank of the Kyobashi-gawa River in conjunction with the 2004 Japan-U.S. Cities Summit in Hiroshima, which took place from November 17 (Wed.) through November 19 (Fri.), 2004.

(1)Date and Time of Ceremony:

Friday, November 19, 2004, 13:30 to 14:15


Kyobashi-gawa Riverbank(west bank from Higashi-Hiroshima-bashi Bridge to Tsurumi-bashi Bridge), Higashi-Hiratsuka-cho, Naka-ku, Hiroshima


  • Event organizers: mayor of Hiroshima, directors general of related bureaus and ward offices - seven people
  • Representatives from cities participating in the Japan-U.S. Cities Summit (from American and Japanese participant cities, including accompanying persons) - 42 people
  • Hiroshima City Council Member Ms. Kyoko Kuwata, deputy chairperson, general affairs committee
  • Guests associated with the historic cherry-for-dogwood goodwill exchange between Japan and America: Ms. Fujiko Hara, managing director, Ozaki Yukio Memorial Foundation; Ms. Akiko Higuchi, mayor, City of Hasuda, a city which has designated the dogwood as city tree; Mr. Koko Kanno, professor, Kochi University, the author of a book related to the dogwood tree; Mr. Toshiro Ito, one of the originators of the Dogwood Initiative 2001 concept - four people total
  • Hiroshima City Greenery Promotion Committee members: Mr. Ko Yamashita, deputy chairperson; Mr. Narimitsu Shintaku, Ms. Megumi Hosomi, Ms. Machiko Hashimoto, and Ms. Taeko Wakamiya - five people
  • Japan-America Society of Hiroshima board members: Consul General Alexander Almasov, US Consulate General in Osaka-Kobe, (honorary member), represented by Vice-Consul General Catherine Spillman, US Consulate General in Osaka-Kobe; Mr. Kazutaka Yamamoto, vice-president, Chugoku Newspaper Company (president) - two people
  • Volunteers - 133 people
  • Hiroshima City residents - approximately 50 people
  • Approximately 250 people in total

(4)Description of Event:

  • Opening
  • Greeting from the mayor of Hiroshima
  • Greeting from a representative of American cities participating in the 2004 Japan-U.S. Cities Summit (The Honorable Heather Fargo, mayor of Sacramento)
  • Greeting from a guest of honor (Ms. Fujiko Hara, senior member, board of directors, Ozaki Yukio Memorial Foundation and granddaughter of the late Mr. Yukio Ozaki)

(5)Commemorative planting

  • Mayor of Hiroshima
  • Representatives from each American city participating in the Japan-U.S. Cities Summit: Honolulu, Hilo, Sacramento (mayor, cherry queen), Fremont, Santa Cruz, Saipan, Akron, Tacoma - nine people
  • Representatives from Japanese cities: Yokosuka, Yokkaichi, Kitakyushu - three people
  • Persons associated with the historic cherry-for-dogwood goodwill exchange between Japan and America - four people
  • Japan-America Society of Hiroshima board members - two people
  • 19 people total

Hiroshima Mayor Tadatoshi Akiba and Honolulu Mayor Jeremy Harris during the commemorative planting

Participant exchange (cherry blossom tea served)

Description of the commemorative planting

The commemorative planting was held as one step towards an exchange that aims to build a new goodwill relation between Japan and America and that expresses the desire for peace by creating green space. Present were nine representatives from American cities participating in the Japan-U.S. Cities Summit, four representatives from Japanese cities, and four people associated with the historic cherry-for-dogwood goodwill exchange between Japan and America. The total attendance was approximately 250 people including volunteers and others. After the planting, participants in the Japan-U.S. Cities Summit and volunteers exchanged with one another while drinking cherry blossom tea.

After the conclusion of the commemorative planting, 100 volunteers planted 100 dogwood seedlings.


We express our profound gratitude to the many Americans who donated the dogwood seeds and seedlings and to the people of Hiroshima who cultivated them for this project.


The downloadable leaflets below were created in November 2004.


150th Anniversary of US-Japan Relationship

Exchange between Japan and the United States of America began in earnest following the arrival of Commodore Perry and his black ships in Uraga in 1853, and the signing of the US-Japan Treaty of Peace and Amity in 1854. 2003 and 2004 mark the 150th anniversaries of these events.

The Dogwood Planting Ceremony is an official "US-Japan 150 Anniversary Event" recognized by the US-Japan 150 Years Committee.

Logo JAPAN US 150


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