Thursday, May 25, 2023 5:00 PM - 7:30 PM ET
Mayor's Reception Room, City Hall 2nd Floor, 1400 John F Kennedy Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19107
Join the Mayor's Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs, Office of Public Engagement, and the Office of Immigrant Affairs in celebrating National Asian Pacific American Heritage Month!
This year the event theme will focus on "Back to the Roots" and highlight the ways Asian and Pacific Islander communities honor their home countries and cultures through entrepreneurship.
Although Chinatown organizations fought and ultimately lost their bid to stop a freeway from being constructed through the heart of Philadelphia’s Chinatown, the community did not give up its fight to retain and reclaim cultural and community space from developers and the government. In 2000, Mayor John Street’s administration announced plans to potentially move the Philadelphia Phillies baseball stadium to his preferred site of Chinatown. The city’s proposal claimed that this would help local businesses prosper. Chinatown community organizations knew that the payoff of a stadium would hurt rather than benefit the community, as evidenced by the freeway and the recently installed convention center. [Image via WHYY]
Celebrate Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month! [City of Philadelphia]
May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month! Established by the U.S. Congress in 1992, Asian Pacific American Heritage Month highlights the stories of people in the United States who are of Asian or Pacific Islander descent. May was chosen to honor the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad, which was built due to the majority of Chinese immigrant laborers, and the arrival of the first Japanese immigrants to the shores of the U.S.The month-long celebration honors the heritage and histories of people from the Asian continent and islands across the South Pacific including Hawaii, American Samoa, Federated Islands of Micronesia, Guam, and more.
Honor Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month with Your Family [Free Library of Philadelphia]
In the month of May, we celebrate the history, culture, and contributions of the diverse Americans who belong to communities with ancestry in Asia, Southeast Asia, the Indian subcontinent, and the Pacific Islands. That’s a lot of different countries, cultures, and languages!
The month of May was chosen to commemorate two events: the first Japanese immigrants to the United States arrived in May of 1843 and the Transcontinental Railroad, built mainly by Chinese immigrants in forced labor conditions, was completed in May of 1869. Though, as you might guess, the history of AAPI people in the U.S. is much longer than that.
The Sachs Program for Arts Innovation and Penn Live Arts at the Annenberg Center are pleased to present a comprehensive exhibition of the work of artist and educator Chen Lok Lee, on view in The Arts Lounge at the Annenberg Center, September 15, 2022—May 2023. A political refugee who swam to Hong Kong to escape Chinese political persecution, Chen Lok Lee’s story is one of survival and resilience. Lee overcame the struggles of immigration to succeed as a beloved and respected artist, educator and master printmaker in Philadelphia.
The 18 prints, watercolors, and lithographs in Excluded/Inclusion: The Work of Chen Lok Lee are a demonstration of work that shows the human spirit of determination, personal agency, and the power of choice to survive.
The School District of Philadelphia is hosting various AAPI Month events and discussions for School District of Philadelphia teachers and non-District teachers. Learn more about the School District of Philadelphia’s events and resources here.
The Pan-Asian American Community House is a hub of academic, personal, and professional growth for University of Pennsylvania students interested in Asian American culture and the Asian American Diaspora. Through advising, leadership development, advocacy, social and cultural programming we expand student access to the University’s resources.
"We aim to provide a common platform to the various Asian member organizations in the Greater Philadelphia area for pursuing their common goals and sharing their concerns.
We try to promote, coordinate and support joint efforts in the social, cultural, educational and charitable activities of the member organizations, provide civic and political education to the people of Asian origin and encourage their participation in public affairs and to enhance their contribution to the society at large.
We strive to foster friendship and understanding between people of Asian origin and others, to act as a spokesperson for the Asian community in the Greater Philadelphia area, raise funds to provide services to Asian Community, thus, aiming to start more productive more joyful lives."
Philly Asians 4 Liberation & Mutual Solidarity is a group of queer Asian artists and activists living in occupied Lenni Lenape territory known today as Philadelphia. Formed emergently during the George Floyd protests in 2020, our group started out as a loose collective of friends interested in reflecting together and learning how to be better accomplices in the struggle for Black liberation. We began serving homemade food as a form of care at protests and providing mutual aid. We are committed to deepening our solidarity with Black and Brown comrades fighting for abolition and racial and economic justice. Remaining agile and responsive to community needs, we see our work as evolving and shape-shifting, engaging in mutual aid, direct action, political education, and more.
May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, which means each day is packed full of countless events as the country celebrates the people, cultures and languages that make up the Asian American and Pacific Islander diaspora.
In just the first week, Mattel debuted a Barbie doll honoring pioneering Hollywood actress Anna May Wong, the fifth person featured on the coins (made in Philly!) in the U.S. Mint American Women Quarters program, which continues through 2025 and will also feature dancer Edith Kanaka’ole and former Hawaii Rep. Patsy Mink. Philadelphia has held events around everything from art on Black and Asian solidarity to three centuries of South Asian American history.
In May 2020, PBS broadcast a groundbreaking five-part documentary series called Asian Americans that chronicled the contributions and challenges of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) throughout our nation’s history. This was a significant milestone for representation in public television and an excellent educational resource unto itself. Acknowledging the rich untold Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander history in Philadelphia, WHYY then began work on a local series – Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders: A Philadelphia Story.
Celebrate Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month (2022)! [City of Philadelphia]
May is Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month! Established by the U.S. Congress in the 1990s, Asian Pacific American Heritage Month highlights the stories of people in the United States who are of Asian or Pacific Islander descent. This includes people from the Asian continent and islands across the South Pacific including Hawaii, American Samoa, Federated Islands of Micronesia, Guam, and more. In May, the City of Philadelphia and many community organizations host celebrations as part of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month!