Due to the outbreak of COVID-19, Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden has decided to cancel this event for the safety of our guests, staff and volunteers. We apologize to those who were planning on attending but will be monitoring the situation and reschedule at a later date.

In the 1940s when many people of Japanese ancestry were displaced from their homes and moved to southern Alberta, they also lost their cars. As they were unable to live in Lethbridge, many rode their bikes from surrounding towns to make the trip into the city to work or purchase groceries. One man in particular, Reverend Jun Kabayama travelled from Raymond to Lethbridge every day, a 38-kilometre trip each way, through the rain, sun and snow – even in minus 20 degree weather. Rev. Kabayama covered the areas of Coalhurst, Taber, Coaldale, and Lethbridge and would rent space in the United Church to hold his services.

In honour of the hardships these people faced, Nikka Yuko and the Bikebridge Cycling Association are hosting a Yuko Fuyu Ride (Friendship Winter Ride) on March 21. Tad Mitsui, the stepson of Rev. Kabayama, will give a short presentation on the reverend at noon at Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden. A bike ride around Henderson Lake will follow, with a Japanese Canadian BBQ at the garden afterwards. There is no charge for the bike ride, however donations will be accepted as a fundraiser for Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden. The BBQ will be $5/person with a cash bar available. All ages are welcome to join us for this ride, however children 5 and under must be in a bike trailer or bike seat. All participants will get a commemorative digital photo of their ride!