July 22, 2009

2009 AUSKF Summer Camp RESOUNDING SUCCESS

Today, I recieved an email from our own Pat Register-sensei to be posted here for everyone:

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Dear Memphis Kendoka,

I would just like to say how proud I am to be a part of Memphis Kendo Club. As an instructor and lifetime student, I am impressed by the way our club handled the task of hosting the National summer camp. I am particularly thankful to our instructors Dach, Yasuda, and Gossett, but it would not have been possible without the help of our students who did their part.

Again, I am humbled by the dedication of everyone involved, including family members and friends. If I have learned one thing during this weekend summer camp, it is to fully commit to your strike and take seriously every swing. Our kendo club showed this virtue in respect to the responsibility we had undertaken.

By this, I am inspired.

Be prepared to work harder than ever before to show your beautiful kendo and NEVER GIVE UP.

Yours in Kendo,

Patrick Register

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For my own part, I would like to reiterate Register-sensei's points. I cannot thank everyone enough for helping to put on such a spectacularly successful summer camp. I received numerous compliments from everyone I came in contact with, especially from the visiting 8.dan sensei, Tagawa-sensei, Yoshida-sensei, Maeda-sensei, Marsten-sensei, Murakami-sensei, Strawn-sensei... the list goes on and on.

As many of you know, there were people from all over the country who came to this event. There were a host of people who came in from the west coast, and even Robert Stroud-sensei DROVE from Idaho for the event. Even greater seemed to be the group that came from the New York area. EVERYONE was very impressed with the organization of the camp and the overall hospitality shown specifically by the Memphis group. All the big wigs know the challenges involved with undertaking a task like this and it did not go unnoticed.

I'm overwhelmed by the help of our volunteers, especially in providing transportation between the hotel and gym, showing up early in the morning and driving folks back to the hotel late in the afternoon. Moreover, our volunteers took up the task of working the registration tables, running to the store for more ice and water, and picking up and delivering the bento on both days. Many of our parents put their family lives on hold to help out, which I know is not an easy thing to do. Very simply stated, these kinds of events NEVER run smoothly without the help of people sacrificing their personal time to ensure that things happen when and where they're supposed to happen.

Without going into greater detail, I cannot avoid mentioning the tremendous efforts of Yasuda-sensei in everything he did to help organize things. Most people will never know how vital his efforts really were.

Finally, I would like to say that I hope everyone was able to get something positive out of the weekend (kendo-related). As some of you know, I injured my foot halfway through Saturday's practice, so I found myself in much the same situation as the folks who were there but were limited in their ability to participate. It's incredible just how much you can pick up by watching and listening, so hopefully, the weekend's experience was very good for those both in and out of bogu.

On a side note, I will be downloading many pictures from the weekend today and posting them in various places.
If you are on Facebook, you need to find the profile for the Southeast US Kendo Federation... pictures will be posted there first. Later, they'll be posted in the photo section of this blog.

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