Asian American/Pacific Islander culture celebrated in May

SHEPPARD AIR FORCE BASE, Texas -- President Jimmy Carter signed a Joint Congressional Resolution, in 1978, which established Asian/Pacific American Heritage week. The first ten days of May were chosen to commemorate two mile stones in Asian/Pacific American history. These events were the arrival of the first Japanese immigrants and the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad of which the majority of workers were Chinese. In 1990, President George H. W. Bush dispensed a proclamation labeling May of that year as the first Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month.

Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) heritage appreciation festivities have provided the opportunity to recognize the diverse cultures and their contributions. Their undertakings and struggles play an important part in American history and should be recognized as so.

President Obama had said in his presidential proclamation, "Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders have persevered and flourished, achieving success in every sector of American life. They stood shoulder to shoulder with their fellow citizens during the civil rights movement; they have served proudly in our Armed Forces; and they have prospered as leaders in business, academia, and public service. Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders are a vast and diverse community, some native to the United States, hailing from Hawaii and our Pacific Island territories. Others trace their heritage to
dozens of countries. All are treasured citizens who enrich our Nation in countless ways, and help fulfill the promise of the American dream which has drawn so many to our shores."

Nowadays, many are making their marks in the pages of philanthropy. These growths are comparable to the increase in the AAPI population. According to the Census Bureau, from 2000 to 2010, the claims to being Asian or Pacific Islander had raised by 46 percent. This makes AAPI the fastest growing racial group in the nation.

Please join us in learning more about these remarkable cultures and be on the look-out for additional information on these upcoming events:

- On May 9, there will be a children's story-telling at the base library from 10:30-11:30 a.m. and the youth center will be having activities to help them learn about this amazing culture from 4 - 5 p.m.

- On May 15 there will be an Asian and Pacific Food Tasting at the Solid Rock Café from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. There will be many dishes to taste as well as live instruction on some dishes!

- On May 22, there will be Luau for the base AITs at the Town Center (pavilion) starting at 6:30 p.m. Please encourage the Airmen in Training to come out, eat, listen to music, and have fun!

- On May 28, we will host our landmark event. The Asian American and Pacific Islander Festival will take place at the Sheppard Club from 11 a.m. -12:30 p.m. Food will be catered to attendees and there will be a live performance!"