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Welcome to the website of the Japan-America Society of Greater Austin.  Please feel free to explore our calendar of events and newsletter information.

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Latest News

Branding and Marketing Strategy for Japanese Green Tea

ATTENTION:  The webinar start time is changed!  Tuesday March 31 2020 at 2:00 pm (CST), 3:00pm (EST), 12:00 noon(PST), 4:30 am (Wed) (JPT)

As part of the 2020 Business and Cultural Speakers series, JASGA will present a seminar entitled "Branding and Marketing Strategy for Japanese Green Tea" by Rona Tison, Executive Vice President for Corporate Relations at ITO EN (North America). 

Note: Not only Rona's company, ITO EN, has implemented a no travel policy due to the COVID-19 virus, but also New York State has issued an executive order, "New York on Pause".  We are moving this event to a webinar (web-based seminar) in order to guarantee the health and safety for all of our attendees.  Our web-based seminar can be just as rewarding. 

About Rona Tison
Executive Vice President - Corporate Relations at ITO EN (North America) Inc.

An expert on the tea industry with extensive knowledge and experience with marketing and promoting Japanese culture in the U.S., Ms. Tison is the Executive Vice President of Corporate Relations at ITO EN (North America) Inc., Japan’s #1 green tea brand and the world’s leading distributor of award-winning premium green tea and other healthy beverages.

Ms. Tison is responsible for maintaining and developing the company’s corporate image through public relations and promotional events. In addition to her role at ITO EN, Rona serves on the Board of the Tea Association of the USA and the Tea & Health Committee. She is also on the Advisory Board of the Global Tea Initiative at the University of California-Davis and has been a speaker at the World Tea Expo in San Francisco, the Los Angeles and Northwest Tea Festivals, the Shizuoka World Tea Festival in Japan, the James Beard House, and in the Smithsonian Lecture Series.

Ms.Tison was born in the United States but grow up in Okinawa and briefly in Tokyo. Her father is from Brooklyn, New York, where ITO EN’s U.S. offices are located, and her mother is from Tokyo. She received her bachelor’s degree in Asian literature from the University of California at Berkeley, and she’s a member of the U.S. Japan Council, Brooklyn Park Conservancy and Japan Society. She received the 2017 John Harney Lifetime Achievement Award for her educational contributions to the tea industry; she was the first woman to ever receive this prestigious award.

Join us and RSVP to participate in the seminar.  Online reservation is available.  Click Register Now.  

Open to the public and Free event for JASGA members and general public.

When: Tuesday March 31 2020 at 2:00 pm (CST), 3:00pm (EST), 12:00 noon(PST), 4:30 am (Wed, JPT)
Where: Webinar  (at your home or any place on your computer and/or mobile phone)

You can also register for the seminar via email at jasga-austin@jasga.org or call 512-656-4731

Registration deadline: March 30, 2020.  

You will receive an invitation and login code to participate a few days and hours before the event.

For any questions, please contact jasg-austin@jasga.org or 512-656-4731

This event is a part of the Harrison Cook speaker series, sponsored by the National Association of Japan-America Societies.



Kite Making and Edo Kites Master Film Screening

Longtime Austinites know that one of the coolest weekends of the year is coming up – the 2020 Zilker Park Kite Festival on March 29th. But to have fun, you need to have a kite.

Come make your own kite. We will offer a hands-on workshop for making a kite, and then you can let it fly high in the sky. There will be lots of fun, a screening of a film about a master kite maker of Edo (old-time Tokyo) style Kites presented by Mr. Mikio Toki.

All ages are welcome!  Time to get creative and have a happy Austin weekend.

The most creative way is to make a kite. At this workshop, you will get a kite kit with everything you need to build an awesome, artistic kite, and there'll be an instructor and volunteers to help you! 

You'll make a classic Japanese style kite. They are made out of Japanese washi paper and bamboo sticks. (Washi is a Japanese paper and is stronger than wood pulp paper.) Using glue and working with natural materials of washi paper and bamboo makes this an organic hands-on kite making experience.

You can select from two different shapes of kites. Both kites are good for Children and Adults. We'll also have special kite train for children under 6 (5 kites only)

Japan-Texas Infrastructure Investment Forum [第3回 日米インフラフォーラム] - Austin, Texas

The Japan -Texas Infrastructure Investment Forum, hosted and sponsored by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport, and Tourism (MLIT) Japan, in partnership with the Texas Economic Development Corporation (TxEDC), will create a unique opportunity to bring participants together to share expertise and build a foundation for future business.

Conference Information:

Date:  Thursday, February 6, 2020 at 12:30 PM
Place:  Hyatt Regency Austin (208 Barton Springs Austin, TX 78704)
Fee:    Free - Advance Registration is required (RSVP)
No. of participants:  Up to 150

 12:30 PM Registration
 1:00-5:45 PM Keynote Speeches and Presentations
 5:45 PM  Reception and Networking

Starting 2020 JASGA Programs - Japanese Language (January 29) - Shodo Japanese Calligraphy (Feb 1)

Register for the Spring 2020 Semester now!  Japanese classes start on 29th of January.

Thank you for your interest in Japan-America Society of Greater Austin's Japanese Language and Shodo Japanese calligrapy program. We currently offer Japanese language and Shodo Japanese calligrapy classes at various levels in Austin.
Registration is now open!

At a glance:

  • Class location this Spring 2020: Anderson High School
  • Business Japanese Culture and Etiquette and Shodo - Downtown Austin (W 6th St.)
  • The start date: Wednesday, 1/29/2020, 2/1, & 2/8
  • Levels from total beginner to advanced and Shodo-Japanese Calligrphy lesson with a certified, Japanese calligraphy master teacher (6-dan)
  • 12 meetings of 1-hour or 1.5-hour classes, once per week
  • 10 meetings of 1-hour class - Japanese Culture, Etiquette, and communication in Business
  • Hiragana and Katakana workshop
  • Japanese-Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) preparatory course
  • Classes of 5 - 15 students
  • Experienced, native Japanese-speaking instructors and college degree holders
  • Tailored private tutoring classes available
  • Offers Corporate Program
  • Children or Teens class is avaialble (another location)
  • Registration Deadline: January 24, 2020 (Fri).

Class Information

Beginning I - Austin 1/29-4/22    6:00-7:00pm
Beginning II - Austin  1/29-4/22    7:00-8:00pm
Beginning IV - Austin 1/29-4/22    8:00-9:00pm
Intermediate III - Austin 1/29-4/22    6:00-7:00pm
Pre-Advanced I - Austin 1/29-4/22    7:00-8:00pm
Advanced I - Austin 1/29-4/22    8:00-9:00pm
Advanced III - Austin 1/29-4/22    7:00-8:00pm
Advanced VI - Austin 1/29-4/22    8:00-9:00pm
Shodo Calligraphy I/II/III 2/1-4/11     1:00-2:00pm


No Classes : March 18, 2020 (Language),  March 7, 2020 (Shodo class)

Language & Shoso class discounts are available to all Japan-America Society of Greater Austin (JASGA) General Members and employees of Corporate Members.

Note: The benefit offers depends on the Corporate Membership Level.

Happy New Year from JASGA!

We hope 2020 is a year of greater hope, peace, and happiness for you and yours.

13th JASGA's Japan Fall Festival Success!

Thank you for joining us for the 2019 Austin Japan Fall Festival - JASGA's 13th Aki Matsuri (秋祭り). It turned out to be a beautiful Sunday afternoon and the Festival was a huge success!

A big Thank You to our friends, supporters, fans, and everyone who came out to share the time with our performers, presenters, vendors, volunteers for our 13th Japan Fall Festival. We also greatly appreciate Consul-General Fukushima, Dr. Cindy Clement, and Keith Taniguchi for their support and cooperation. Hope all of you had good time with us at Zilker Botanical Garden and Taniguchi Japanese Garden!

Enjoy photo album! 

Check out highlight video!

Kagami Daiko [鏡太鼓] performance

Japnese Classical Dance [日本舞踊] Performance 

Thank you again and we'd love to see you all at 2020 Aki Matsuri ~ 14th Japan Fall Festival!

The 2019 JASGA 13th Aki Matsuri was held in corporation with Consulate General of Japan in Houston, Zilker Botanical Garden, and Taniguhi Japanese Garden, which JASGA has been cleaning on our volunteer workdays for over 10 years.