Due to the pandemic, this was the 2nd year we had to cancel our annual Arigato Bazaar, but our committee still wanted to find a way to fundraise for the Centenary. Taking a cue from other groups doing “to go” bento box fundraisers, we decided to do our own take on the idea and on Saturday, June 26, 2021, we had our first “Taste of the Arigato Bazaar” Bento Box Fundraiser featuring a selection of delicious food from our annual festival: Centenary’s famous Teriyaki Chicken, the delicious Kalbi Ribs from our Beef Bento, our popular Asian Chicken Salad, an assortment of handmade Inari and Maki Sushi and completed with a sweet treat of homemade cookies and fruit reminiscent of our Baked Goods booth.
Just like our regular bazaar, the church was buzzing with activity in preparation before the event day. However, unlike previous bazaars, this was extra exciting as many of us have not spent time together in person in over a year.
Saturday was full of excitement as the church came alive with volunteers coming together to make food and pack the boxes while others were outside guiding those driving through the parking lot to pick-up their orders. Another group took orders down to Faith UMC in Torrance for our satellite pick-up location for those closer to the South Bay area.
We raised $17,084.28 in meal sales and donations for Centenary. But what was just as important as the money we raised during the event was the opportunity for the in-person fellowship and homecoming that is a highlight of our annual bazaar.
Thank you to all our supporters and the volunteers who worked hard to make this event happen. SPECIAL THANK YOU to the following:
Corporate Donors: Tanaka Farms, Umina Brothers, Feast From the East, Perfect Parking, Mike Matsunaga and Justin Nguyen for arranging parking at the Medical Building for our volunteers.
Rev. Allison Mark and the congregation of Faith UMC for allowing us to use their church as a pick-up location.
Sandee Furuta and her team (Brian Kurushima, Susan Onishi, Jane & Wendell Oyama, Jane Matsumoto) for all their hard work at the Faith pick-up site.
Rev. Mark Nakagawa for helping to facilitate donations for goods and services for the event.
The Centenary Bazaar Committee members for all their dedication and effort in putting together this kind of drive-through event for the first time.
Thank you once again for all your support of this first-time fundraiser and we hope to see you in-person next year at our full Arigato Bazaar!