Allan Osamu Kobayashi remembers Christmas concerts at the Okanagan Centre School:
“Special days came and went with the changing seasons. The first grand occasion was Halloween which meant a masquerade party. … Then came Christmas and the concert.
[Teacher] Mrs. Parker was reputed to present a concert unequalled anywhere. We sang ‘Santa Claus is coming to town’ with Mrs. Parker at the piano. Every child received a gift, an orange, and a net bag full of sugary candy. We had the time of our lives. Akira [Hikichi] and I always did recitations. We presented ‘The Night before Christmas’ and a piece about two Chinese boys. After Akira left for Vernon, in spite of Mrs. Parker’s objections, I insisted on doing a recitiation portraying a French Canadian voyageur. I believe a poet called William Henry Drummond composed it. I got my way. There I was, a little Japanese boy with close-cropped hair, reciting away with a Québécois accent. Poor Mrs. Parker. What she had to put up with.
Christmas concert, Dec. 20, 1935
Left to Right. Back row: Akira Hikichi, Amy Toda, Mieko Kobayashi, Sachiyo Koyama, Eiko Toda, Flo Kobayashi, Mr. Pixton (Santa Claus), Nora Carter, Lorraine Long
Front row: Susan Kobayashi, Margaret Kobayashi, Nobu Toda, Jane Kobayashi, Ruth Nuyens, Pat Cheesman, Osamu Kobayashi
This selection from Okanagan Centre School Days is part of an interview with Allan Osamu Kobayashi. An earlier blog post about Kobayashi’s school memories, Okanagan Centre School Days, was posted on this Blog on October 25th. To read the full text of the interview see the (soon to be published) Lake Country Heritage and Cultural Society’s publication Kakonosedai: A Century of Community, on sale at the LC Museum and Archives.