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PRESS RELEASE: Morikami Announces new Let the Games Begin! Virtual Exhibit

Thursday, July 8, 2021 - 2:57pm

The museum’s photo archives also showcase the recreational pastimes of the Yamato

Colonists who settled in Delray Beach during the early 20th century. Naturally, they

embraced sports that were popular in America such as baseball and golf. They also brought and shared some Japanese games and activities, including the card



and the board game


. According to a 2016 survey by the International

Go Federation, over 46 million people worldwide who know how to play the game with

over 20 million current players.


Let the Games Begin!

Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens

Unveils New Virtual Exhibit

Showcasing Sports and Games of Japan

Delray Beach, FL Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens recently added an exciting new online exhibition to its virtual library. Titled “Let the Games Begin,” the exhibit showcases the cross-cultural influence of sports and interactive games found

around the world.

One of the popular sports unique to Japan is sumo. Sumo is closely associated with the indigenous Shintō religion; the sport was introduced during the Yayoi period at the order of

Emperor Suinin (who reportedly reigned for 99 years from 29 B.C.E. to 70 C.E.). Pre- game etiquette in which sumo wrestlers engage in before fighting, such as stamping their feet and throwing salt stem from religious rituals. To win in sumo, wrestlers must push or pull the opponent out of the ring, or forcing them to the mat. Garbed in robes similar to those worn by Shintō priests, sumo referees are highly respected by both participants and fans for their decorum and judgment.


In Japan, as in many other countries, the horse symbolizes power and wealth as well as a crucial component to success on the battlefield. By the 7th century, mounted archery, called yabusame, had become a necessary marital arts skill, especially in the days before the sword was the weapon of choice for samurai warriors. By the Heian period (794- 1185), archery competitions were included in formal court ceremonies to honor ancestors and request protection for the community from the gods. After the 16th century when guns were introduced from the West archery faded as a combat skill, but continues as an aesthetic practice to refine both the body and mind. No longer on horseback, the marital art of kyūdō, or the way of the bow, came to be widely practiced. After WWII, high schools revived it as an extracurricular activity more closely related to archery in the West. However, in Japan the focus remains on self- improvement over scoring and awards.


Similarly, another traditional martial art that developed into a modern sport is kendō. During the Shōtoku era (1711-1716), Naganuma Shirozaemon-Kunisato (1688-1767) developed new and more graceful techniques of wielding the sword created from actual battle skills, and shaped the foundation of formal routines, or kata. Later, protective gear and the bamboo-sword (shinai) were established as basic equipment. The playing area is a 33-foot square. Because you can circle your opponent in kendō (unlike Western fencing) there can be a lot of physical contact, and kendō practitioners are allowed to strike a player when they are down.


Many traditional Japanese sports and games date back to the classical Heian period (794-1185). One example is the Japanese version of hacky-sack, or kemari. It was an engaging pastime for the elite and commoners alike at the Heian court with anywhere from two to 12 people divided into two teams who try to keep the hide-covered ball in the air as long as possible. The typical court has a dirt floor and one tree at each corner: ideally a cherry, maple, willow, and pine. The contemporary Kemari Preservation Society maintains the courtly traditions associated with the game.


Other games and contests invented in the Heian period began to thrive later in the Edo period (1603-1868), such as kite battles. One of the most famous kite events is the Hamamatsu Kite Festival. It dates back to 1558 as a celebration in honor of the local lord’s firstborn son. It is held annually on May 3-5 in the city of Hamamatsu, and features a contest on the beach where teams from over 100 different towns try to bring

down each other’s kites. These massive kites can be more than 11 feet wide and take several people to launch and control them. A smaller version of these fighting kites in the Morikami Museum Collection bears the symbol for the town of Kitamachi.


Another favorite Heian pastime was the shell-matching game, or kaiawase, which came into full development by the 12th century. In the early years of the game, one would accumulate a set of shells with scenes painted on them and play with one to four people, usually kneeling on a mat or next to a low table. By the end of the 12th century, the full game set consisted of 360 illustrated clamshells. The matching lacquer boxes for carrying the pieces became more elaborate over the years, too.


Another globally beloved game that flourished in the Edo period is the Japanese version of a cup-and-ball game called kendama. Legend states that French sailors brought bilboquet to Japan in the 1700s as a drinking game. The Japanese added two side cups of

different size to make it more challenging and today there are formal competitions held worldwide. Don’t miss the Kendama World Cup hosted by Japan on August 21-22, 2021.


In the early 1900s, a table game introduced by the French called Corinth evolved into Pachinko. A kind of up-right pinball machine and slot machine combined, the name Pachinko derives from the sound the metal balls make. Throughout the 1920s and 1930s, they were primarily enjoyed by kids in candy shops, but gradually were taken over by adults for gambling. While gambling is illegal in Japan, Pachinko parlors circumvent the laws by awarding prizes, not cash; or you can take a prize ticket to a separate shop to exchange it for money. From 1937, production of Pachinko machines stopped as manufacturing shifted to support the war effort. After World War II the gaming industry revived; and today it accounts for more than 4% of Japan’s Gross Domestic Product annually.

Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens is located at 4000 Morikami Park Road, Delray Beach. For more information, please call (561) 495-0233 or visit

For full Press Release with photos, click HERE

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PRESS RELEASE: Amanda Perna to Co-Chair Breast Cancer Walk in Downtown Delray

Wednesday, June 30, 2021 - 5:18pm

For Immediate Release

Media Contact: Lindsay B Bennett

American Cancer Society



American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer of South Palm Beach welcomes Perna to their committee

Delray Beach, FL – June 10th – The American Cancer Society is proud to announce that Amanda Perna is the honorary co-chair of their Making Strides Against Breast Cancer of South Palm Beach committee. 

“They asked me and there was no hesitation; I just said yes!” said Amanda Perna.  “If I can help bring attention to this amazing cause and help honor breast cancer survivors, I’m in!”

As owner and designer for two brands, The House of Perna and Neon Bohemians, Amanda is no stranger to the non-profit world. With a studio at the Arts Warehouse in Downtown Delray, she frequently dedicates her time to Delray Beach based non-profits such as the Achievement Centers for Children & Families, Delray Beach Library and spent a lot of time making and donating masks to frontline workers and over a hundred organizations across the US at the height of the pandemic.

American Cancer Society Senior Development Manager, Lindsay B Bennett, said “It was an absolute no brainer when I knew my event was in South Palm Beach.  Amanda is so dedicated to spreading love and joy to everyone she interacts with. She loves Delray, Boca Raton, and Boynton Beach as her “home base” and gives her time and resources anytime she can. I’ve known Amanda for many years, and to have her as part of our committee means the world us in the American Cancer Society.”

The American Cancer Society Making Strides Against Breast Cancer of South Palm Beach event will be held at Old School Square in Delray Beach on Saturday, October 9th.  It will unite southern Palm Beach County communities to honor cancer survivors and caregivers touched by the disease, and raise awareness and funds for a world without breast cancer.  Registration will begin at 7 am. Making Strides Against Breast Cancer is the largest network of breast cancer awareness events in the nation. If you are interested in getting involved, please go to or contact Lindsay B Bennett via



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Monday, June 21, 2021 - 2:19pm

Road Closure: Beginning Tuesday, July 6th we will be closing a single lane of northbound NE 6th Ave., (Federal Hwy), between Atlantic Ave. and NE 1st St. each weekday through Friday, July 9th and Monday, July 12th to erect structural steel and repair/replace curb along the west side of the buildings under construction at Atlantic Crossing. MOT will begin set-up on NE 6th Ave. Federal Hwy. beginning at 9:00 a.m. each morning and removed by 3:30 p.m. each afternoon on these days.

No work will commence on the weekend.

Local law enforcement will also be present to assist with pedestrian and vehicular traffic.

Detour Routes: For northbound NE 6th Ave. will be west on Atlantic Ave. to NE 4th Ave., to NE 1st St. then northbound on NE 6th Ave. or East on Atlantic Ave. to A1A north to George Bush Blvd. West to NE 6th Ave.


Project Contact; John Sabatano

                           Urban 5 Constructors

                           (614)332-9573 Mobile


NE 3rd Avenue Streetscape Project

Monday, June 21, 2021 - 2:04pm

NE 3rd Avenue

Streetscape Improvements

City Project No. 11-024


The City of Delray Beach (City) desires to improve the following roadways:

 NE 3rd Avenue from NE 3rd Street to NE 4th Street

Proposed improvements include:

  •   Roadway reconstruction

  •   ADA-compliant sidewalk improvements

  •   Drainage improvements

  •   Sanitary sewer improvements

  •   Water main improvements

  •   Landscaping & irrigation

  •   Street lighting

  •   Signage and pavement markings


After construction begins call the project hotline with any questions and let us know how we’re doing!

Toll-Free Project Hotline: 844-254-6404

Anticipated Construction Schedule:

Construction Start: September 2021

Construction Completion: March 2022

City Project Manager: Begona Krane (561-243-7299)

Construction Manager: Aaron Cutler (561-425-7714)

DDA Program Coordinator Job opening

Wednesday, June 16, 2021 - 6:06pm

The Downtown Development Authority is seeking candidates for the role of DDA Program Coordinator.  For the full job description, please see attached.  If interested in applying, please send your resume to by July 5th.