Fun Day for Families at the Immigration Station
The Immigration Station recently came alive with interactive activities and some very special entertainment for families who participated in AIISF’s Family Day. This was planned in collaboration with Peninsula Chapter of APAPA (Asian Pacific Islander American Public Affairs). Guests ranged from 5-year-olds to grandparents, and everyone was treated to dynamic programming related to immigration, history and the arts. Participants included:
● Soprano Heather Klein, who led the “Interrogator and Detainee” station. Ms. Klein had guests take turns acting out an interrogation scene from her opera about her Jewish grandmother, Shanghai Angels. Ms. Klein performed a few beautiful solos from Shanghai Angels at lunchtime.
● Grant Din, who led a station on “Building a Family Tree.” He guided guests on developing one’s own family tree through family interviews and research of immigration records at the National Archives. Many participants were wowed by the very detailed and voluminous family tree that Grant has built of his own family over years of research.
● Lenora Lee led the “Stories in Motion” station in which the participants expressed themselves through movement and not words. The emotions that the Immigration Station elicits were the focus of these exercises. Ms. Lee then gave a moving performance from Within These Walls, a production set to a taped recording of an interrogation transcript.
Because of the Family Day’s great multi-generational educational value, AIISF plans to continue this tradition annually, with returning families and new families spending a day at the Immigration Station for a bit of fun, nostalgia and history.
We would like to extend a special thanks to our student intern, SFSU Senior Lily Nguyen, who was primarily responsible for all logistics, planning and execution of this event.
By Rosemarie Nahm, VP of Programs