Bainbridge Island Japanese American Community

Mochi Tsuki 2023

Mochi Tsuki is Back!

For more than 30 years the Bainbridge Island Japanese American Community has hosted Mochi Tsuki, a celebration to ring in the New Year.  After a two year hiatus due to COVID, we will again be welcoming the public to celebrate by making mochi in the traditional way–steaming sweet rice over an open fire, followed by pounding the rice by hand with traditional, handcrafted cherry wood mallets (kine) in a granite bowl (usu). Visitors can get in on the action by trying their hands at pounding the mochi, forming it into cakes by hand, and eating it while it’s still warm and sticky!

Once again, we are privileged to host Seattle Kokon Taiko for two shows. Each show will seat a maximum of 700 guests, so please grab a free ticket to reserve your spot when you arrive. And, this year for the first time we will host an obon dance workshop. Be sure and visit our dancers and learn about this traditional festival dance.


DATE: Saturday, January 7, 2023

LOCATION: Woodward Middle School, 9125 Sportsman Club Rd, Bainbridge Island

TIME: 11am – 3pm


OBON DANCE: 1-1:30pm

POINT OF DEPARTURE:  Public premier of this short documentary, selected for the 12th annual Films of Remembrance film festival in San Francisco, February 25th, 2023

COST: Free, donations welcome



Woodward Middle School

Woodward Middle School opened in December of 1994 as a 6th – 8th grades middle school. A community-wide grand opening celebration was held on Saturday, November 5th, 1994 featuring a dedication ceremony, barbecue, tours and entertainment. The first principal was Jerry McLaughlin. Grade levels were reconfigured with increasing student enrollment at the elementary and middle school levels, and Woodward Middle School changed to a grades 7-8 school when Sakai Intermediate opened as a grades 5-6 school in 2000.

The school was named after Walt & Milly Woodward, publishers and owners of the Bainbridge Review from 1941 to 1988. Walt Woodward was the only publisher on the west coast to take a consistent stand against the internment of the Japanese during World War II. His courage and dedication to fair and accurate reporting during and beyond this challenging time on Bainbridge Island remains an inspiration to Woodward Middle School staff and students.

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