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Japanese Youth Exchange

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The Hawkins-Holly Lake Rotary Club recently sponsored a Japanese Youth Exchange whereby eleven Japanese students (juniors in High School) and one sponsor became guests of this area.

With vans and drivers provided by Jarvis Christian College, the Japanese were met at DFW airport, Friday, March 16, by members Bob Schneider (president), Mary Wright and daughter, Margo Cobb, and Gipsy Schneider. Upon leaving Dallas, they were treated to a Texas barbecue in Terrel, and then met by their host families at the Robert Young Center.

 The host families included Wilson and Annette Crabtree, Arlan and Ann Flake, John and Ann Sparks, Mary and Joe Wright, and Robert and Mary Jane Young. On Friday evening the Japanese students watched Hawkins girls' softball and boys' baseball teams play Como-Pickton.

On Saturday, after a delicious brunch at JCC and time on computers at the technology building where they emailed their families, the host families treated the students to a variety of activities including visits to the Tiger Preserve, Hawkins City Park, Veterans' Memorial, shopping malls in Tyler, the Tyler zoo, bowling alley, and Lake Hawkins for boating.

Bob and Gipsy Schneider hosted a backyard party for Rotarians, Japanese students and guests serving the traditional nachos, hamburgers, hot dogs, and roasted marshmallows. All were treated to an Oriental song and dance program presented by the Japanese students and sponsor who were attired in native dress.

The program was followed by an exchange of Rotary banners and gifts. On Sunday, many of the host families provided opportunities for the students to attend church services and to have a picnic lunch. At 2:00 PM Greggton Rotary Club picked up the students for a stay to culminate in a two-week visit to America with several other East Texas Rotary Clubs.

 Upon saying goodbye to Hawkins-Holly Lake Rotary, there were many tears of appreciation in that this had been such a rewarding experience for ALL involved with this project.


Last Updated on Thursday, 30 April 2009 17:02  

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