For forty-seven years, the Boulder Valley School District (BVSD) has conducted a cultural student exchange program with high schools in Japan, where Japanese students will visit and attend schools in the Boulder area for six weeks, and will then host students from Boulder during the following summer. A few years ago
when Michele DeBerry, who runs the exchange program for the BVSD, and Mike Kleinkopf, who heads the program at Boulder High, learned about the devastating tsunami in Fukushima, they organized a relief benefit for the disaster recovery. Similarly, when the students in Japan learned about the floods that Boulder and surrounding communities had gone through they wanted to do the same for us.
This year seven students, Yusaku Tanaka, Rena Yoshida, Yui Takagi, Juma Kimura, Yu Sakamoto, Ryota Kikuchi, and Tomoya Mizoguchi, from Tokyo Jitsugyo High School, along with their teacher/advisor Kazuyoshi Fuchita held a benefit fundraiser at a cultural festival in Japan. The students set up a booth, explained what had happened in Colorado, their relationship with Boulder, the students, and members of the community, and raised over $4,300. When the advisors for the Japanese Exchange Program learned about the benefit/donation, they immediately thought of Lyons.
Last Thursday morning, May 1, the students and their teacher, along with a few Boulder High School students who are in the program came to Lyons to present Town Officials with a check and tour the confluence area. After the tour, the students enjoyed a picnic lunch, a few games at Lyons Classic Pinball, and a hike along the Hall Ranch Trail. On behalf of the many Lyons residents who are still struggling to recover from the flood, we say, “Domo arigatou gozaimasu!”