SAN FRANCISCO – Nihonmachi Little Friends (NLF) will celebrate the agency’s 38th anniversary with a Sushi Social on Friday, Nov. 22, at 6 p.m. in its Tateuchi Auditorium at 1830 Sutter St. in San Francisco’s Japantown.

The event will feature updated renderings of the proposed new preschool building by HKIT Architects and a special recognition of Mary Ishisaki, a longtime NLF supporter. Back by popular demand, Chef Masanobu “Massy” Sato and his associates will prepare an assortment of delectable sushi. Tamiko Wong, executive director of the Oakland Asian Cultural Center and an early NLF graduate, will emcee the event.

At last year’s Sushi Social, NLF announced the launch of a capital campaign to build an addition to the existing Sutter Street facility that will allow both programs to be housed in the same location, a permanent home for the entire preschool program. nlf-plant a seedThe capital campaign has already received strong support from the community but still needs to raise the remaining $1.8 million of the $3.5 million required to construct the new addition. Time is of the essence as there is limited time to stay at its Bush Site facility.

“The successful completion of the Plant a Seed Campaign is critical to NLF as well as the Japantown community and San Francisco as a whole,” said NLF Executive Director Cathy Inamasu. “The project will enable NLF to continue to provide its affordable, educational childcare programs to a diverse population of families with young children in a stable and secure facility. The new building addition will also allow us to serve more preschoolers through an increase in our licensed capacity.”

Designed by famed architect Julia Morgan, 1830 Sutter was built in 1932 as the Japanese YWCA, offering temporary housing and cultural and social activities for young women and girls. NLF completed its $2.2 million capital campaign to fund the purchase and renovation of the Sutter Street building in 2009. The building was entrusted to NLF as part of the settlement of a community-supported lawsuit to save the building.

The project completion will ensure the continued preservation and retention of 1830 Sutter for greater community use. NLF presently allows community groups to use its facility for special events and programs, such as tea ceremony demonstrations, music and dance performances, and film showings. The building expansion will provide increased opportunities for the community to utilize the facilities for other functions and programs after preschool hours.

“NLF is blessed to be one of those organizations that Mary so generously supports,” said NLF Board Chair Adrienne Shiozaki Woo. “Her philanthropy, commitment to our community, and her volunteer spirit have touched many of our children and their families.”

Currently Ishisaki serves on the Advisory Board of NLF’s Plant a Seed Campaign.

Suggested donation is $100 per person. To make reservations, contact NLF at (415) 922-8898 or visit All proceeds from the evening will benefit NLF’s programs and its Building Fund.

This event is made possible with the support of Union Bank and Wells Fargo.

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