The Orange Story Continues to be Told


Although filmed more than a year ago and having premiered at the end of 2016, the short film The Orange Story starring Chicago Aikido Club (CAC) senior instructor Joe Takehara Sensei continues its journey to educate the public and a new generation about the World War II Japanese American internment.

In September, the film was shown as part of a session on the internment in the intro to Asian American studies course taught by Dr. Corinne Kodama of the Global Asian Studies Program at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). Takehara Sensei was in attendance along with representatives of the filmmaking team. At one point, the students were polled of their previous knowledge of the internment, and only four of 30 students said the topic had been covered in high school. Three more such sessions at UIC are planned for October.


Then on September 30, Takehara Sensei accompanied the filmmakers to Los Angeles for a screening and panel at the Japanese American National Museum.

Thank you again to Takehara Sensei, producer Jason Matsumoto, and the team at Full Spectrum Features for keeping this important part of American history (and Takehara Sensei’s own life) alive and in the minds of people today.

On a side note, although not directly connected to Takehara Sensei, The Orange Story or Chicago Aikido Club, Alphawood Gallery in Chicago has been hosting an in-depth and informative exhibit on the internment. Titled Then They Came for Me, the exhibit includes extensive photos, artifacts, film footage and video testimonials. If interested, you have until November 19 to catch it.




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Post-Hurricane Assistance for Michi Dojo in San Juan, Puerto Rico

Request for assistance for Michi Dojo, an affiliate of our national organization Aikido Schools of Ueshiba (ASU). They are based in San Juan, Puerto Rico and suffered damage from the Hurricane.



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October JASC Cosplay-Themed Fundraiser

Chicago Aikido Club’s home base, the Japanese American Service Committee (JASC), is partnering with AnimeChicago to host a cosplay themed fundraiser on Thursday, October 26. Titled “Kowai Nite Cosplay Fest: A celebration of Japanese pop culture to benefit JASC,” the event will be held from 6:30 pm to 10:00 pm at Architectural Artifacts (4325 North Ravenswood Avenue). The evening will include a cosplay contest, gaming section and tournament, and a live DJ. Tickets and more information at The event is 21+.
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Feldenkrais Classes in Uptown

Jason Shadday, friend of the club and former member of Chicago Aikikai, is hosting a series of workshops teaching the Feldenkrais Method of exercise therapy at his massage studio in Uptown.
Feldenkrais was devised by Moshé Feldenkrais (1904–1984) who applied knowledge gained from his study of physics, engineering, and martial arts (judo) to an intensive self-study of movement habits.
All sessions will be taught by Suzanne Thompson, founder of the Feldenkrais program at Columbia College, and head Feldenkrais instructor at Steppenwolf Theater.

Details below.

Come to Your Senses (Feldenkrais Class)

Description: What is it about fall that makes us want to go back to class? It’s the human condition wanting to learn. Re-spark that brilliant brain that learned so easily when you were young. Join me as we explore our ribs and our breath, and maybe discover something new about our balance.

Tuesdays, October 3, 10, 17, 24, 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm

“Our Ribs: Cage or Carriage?”


Thursdays, October 5, 12, 19, 26, 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm

“Breath: Our Life-long Companion”



4 week Tuesday sessions — $80

4 week Thursday sessions — $80



Jason Shadday Studio

Uptown Bank Building

(also known as Bridgeview Bank Building)

4753 N. Broadway Avenue

10th Floor, Suite 1014

(building entrance is on Lawrence Ave. right next to Starbucks)

Free 2 hour parking in the bank parking lot east of the building along the L tracks.



Contact Suzanne Thompson


Phone: 773-490-3150

Space is limited

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Blast from Chicago Aikido’s Past – Archival Photo from local Japanese festival

1967-08-27 Chicago Tribune IAC Ginza

Our friend Erik Matsunaga, head instructor of  Ravenswood Shorin-ryu Karate Dojo and writer for the Japanese American online journal Discover Nikkei, recently shared with us this excerpt from a 1967 edition of the Chicago Tribune.

Dated August 27, it features a photo and caption of an Aikido demonstration by the old Illinois Aikido Club (Chicago’s first Aikido dojo, and starting point for instructors such as Joe Takehara and Mike Mamura) at the annual Ginza Holiday Festival at the Midwest Buddhist Temple.

The caption contains several interesting inaccuracies, referring to the dojo as “Aikido Club of Illinois,” and referring to the temple as “Midwest Buddhist church.” Plus the use of the term “Oriental”; now largely considered inaccurate and outdated.

Thanks Erik for providing us with this piece of local Aikido and Japanese American history.

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Bob Poresky Seminar in Batavia

Mushin Aikido Dojo in Batavia, IL will be hosting a two-day seminar with Bob Poresky Saturday, November 4 and Sunday, November 5.
Bob Poresky is the founder and chief instructor of Capital Aikikai of Syracuse.  Spanning over three and a half decades, he has an extensive and diverse involvement in martial arts.  He currently holds the rank of godan (5th degree blackbelt) and is certified as a shidoin (instructor) by Aikido Hombu (Headquarters) Dojo.  In addition, he holds a nanadan (7th degree black belt) as a shihan (master instructor) in karate, as well as black belt rankings in aikijujutsu and iaido.
Bob Poresky’s practice and teaching focus on traditional martial principles and philosophies, all aspects of self-defense, and self-development.  He sits on the Board of Governors of the Capital Aikikai Federation and is one of Clyde Takeguchi Shihan’s senior students.
Bob Poresky Aikido Seminar
Saturday, November 4 and Sunday, November 5.
Classes starting at 10:00 AM
River West Family Fitness is at the Southwest corner of Shumway and First St., one block south of Wilson Street and two blocks east of Rt 31 in Batavia.  Parking is available on the north and east sides of the building.  Enter through the front door, north side of the building on First Street under the canopy.
Hotel information below.  Spaces available for sleeping bags on the mat.  Please call in advance if you have any special needs.  Refreshments, snacks and maps to local eateries will be available.  Dinner on Saturday night at the dojo will be a catered meat course with salads, potluck side dishes, desserts and beverages.  Bring your own food and drink of choice.  No donations needed (None refused).
A block of rooms are reserved at the Comfort Inn of Geneva.  Prices are $92/night for a double queen (two queen beds) or a king suite (a king bed and a twin couch).  Please mention“aikido” when booking.  Comfort Inn guarantees these rates until 10/1/2016.  After that date, they will honor the rate as rooms are available.
Comfort Inn & Suites of Geneva
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Ikeda Shihan at Chicago Aikikai

「hiroshi ikeda aikido images」の画像検索結果

Chicago Aikikai will host a Labor Day weekend seminar with Hiroshi Ikeda Shihan (7th dan, Boulder Aikikai) on September 1 to 3. Classes are 6:30 pm-8:30 pm on Friday (Sep 1), 10:00 am-12:00 pm and 3:00 pm-5:00 pm on Saturday (Sep 2), and 10:00 am-12:00 pm on Sunday (Sep 3).  Cost is $170.00 for the full weekend or $50.00 per class. Full information and pre-registration available at the Chicago Aikikai website.

The Chicago Aikikai (located at 1444 W. Chicago Avenue) is Chicago’s oldest dojo for the martial art of Aikido. It is the direct successor to the original Illinois Aikido Club, and is currently affiliated with the Aikido Schools of Ueshiba (ASU) and is under the instruction of Marsha Turner (6th dan).


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BOOK REVIEW: Hapkido by Scott Shaw — Stories

Hapkido: Korean Art of Self-Defense by Scott Shaw My rating: 4 of 5 stars Amazon page When I picked up this book, all I knew about Hapkidō was that it was a Korean martial art, that it wasn’t a sport like its more famous martial cousin—Tae Kwon Do (TKD), and that it was a […]

via BOOK REVIEW: Hapkido by Scott Shaw — Stories

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Chicago Nikkei Picnic 2017

Image may contain: 4 people, people sitting, people eating, table and food

On Saturday, August 5, Chicago Aikido Club’s host and supporter Tohkon Judo Academy will be co-sponsoring the annual Nikkei (Japanese American) Picnic together with Japanese American Service Committee.

The event is free and open to the public. Organizers will be providing roast pig, hot dogs, hamburgers and other stuff from the grill, while all other food and beverages will be potluck (BYOB; please note no glass containers allowed).

Scheduled activities include games for kids and adults, karaoke (11 a.m. – 4 p.m.),  horseback riding, volleyball, softball and tug-of-war

Time for the event is 11:00 am to 6:00 pm.

Location is Grove #7 at  Bunker Hill Forest Preserve (Touhy And Harts Rd, Niles, IL 60714).

Volunteers are needed to help load-up supplies. Loading will take place Friday, August 4 (after 6:00 pm- 7:45 pm Aikido class) starting at 8:00 pm.

If anyone is available after the end of the picnic, cleanup will begin at 6:00 pm with unloading at the dojo at 8:00 pm.




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Special 1-Day Seminar with Wendy Whited Sensei

Chicago Aikikai's photo.
Chicago Aikikai will be hosting a special one-day seminar with Wendy Whited Sensei (7th dan, Inaka Dojo) on Saturday, September 9, 2017.
Class times are 10:00 am – 12:00 pm and 2:30 pm – 4:30 pm. The afternoon class will be followed with dan (black belt) testing and a party from 5:30 pm.

Fee is $25.00 for the day. Aikidoka of all affiliations and levels are welcome.

Registration is via the Aikikai webpage here. You may also download the seminar flyer or visit the Facebook event page.
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