56th Hatsugama 2023
第56回 初釜

On January 8th, 2023, the first tea of the year known as hatsugama (which means “first kettle”) was held at the Marina Village Conference Center’s Bayview Room located in Mission Bay, San Diego. Urasenke Tankokai San Diego Association’s Soshin Saito sensei and her students gathered to celebrate the new year. This was our first gathering since the Covid-19 pandemic.
The student demonstrated misonodana 御園棚, a way of serving tea using tables and chairs. This style of tea preparation is called ryurei, and was first introduced to the world by Gengensai (1810-1877), the 11th head of Urasenke for the 1872 International Exposition in Kyoto so that Western visitors could be served tea while comfortably sitting in chairs in a non-traditional Japanese setting.
Happy year of the Rabbit to you all.

North America Chado Relay in San Diego Starts Next Week

North America Chado Relay arrives in San Diego, Nov. 1 & 2

The North America Chado Relay arrives in San Diego in one week! For San Diego Tankokai members only, if you desire to submit a post for the San Diego Relay and haven’t reached out to us yet, please let us know right away. It’s not too late to submit a post. Please email urasenkesandiego@gmail.com for details. Kindly “Like and Follow” the following links below:



Welcome to the Urasenke San Diego Website

Welcome to the Urasenke Tankokai San Diego Association website! San Diego is nestled in the southernmost portion in the state of California, bordering the city of Tijuana, Mexico.

Here, the weather is mild all year round. The landscape of San Diego allows for a variety of activities since the county faces the Pacific Ocean in the west, Anza-Borrego desert in the east, Palomar mountains in the north, and Mexico in the south.

Back in the 1960s, SeaWorld San Diego opened to accommodate a large marine mammal park including killer whales. Today, SeaWorld San Diego is a world-famous marine park and tourist attraction with thousands of visitors exploring the facility. However, in the 1960s, it was operated in collaboration with Murata Pearls, a Japanese pearl company. Murata Pearls invested to include top-notch Japanese gardens at the park, with a replica of the famous Kinkakuji Gold Pavilion in Kyoto, complete with a Shoin-style tea room on the second floor. To further share the Japanese culture with the San Diego community, Murata Pearls invited someone to demonstrate Chado, the Way of Tea, in the tea room of the Gold Pavilion.

The beautiful replica of the famous Kinkakuji Gold Pavilion in Kyoto, in SeaWorld San Diego that opened in 1964.
1964年に開園したシーワールドサンディエゴに建てられた京都・鹿苑寺の 舎利殿「金閣」を模したゴールドパビリオン

A young tea practitioner named Soshin Nakano, a student and assistant to Mme. Yaeko Shiotsuki, who is the sister of Daisosho Hounsai Sen, was chosen for this assignment. Soshin Nakano stayed in San Diego for two years to demonstrate tea at SeaWorld and met many audiences, including Walt Disney who was a consultant for the management of SeaWorld.

Mrs. Tomiko Sen demonstrating Japanese Tea in the 1960s, within the inner garden of the Kinkakuji Gold Pavilion replica located in SeaWorld San Diego.
千登美子様、シーワールドサンディエゴのゴールドパビリオン内の庭園にて 1960年代

In the mid-1970s, Soshin Nakano returned to San Diego as Soshin Saito, and continued to teach Chado to the San Diego community. Hounsai Daisosho, then Grand Master Soshitsu Sen XV, proposed that she open a chapter in San Diego. And that was the beginning of the Chado Urasenke Tankokai San Diego Association.

The tea room inside the SeaWorld gold pavilion in the 60s. Saito Soshin sensei is in the middle, with local students on the left, and visitors from SeaWorld Japan on the right.

Currently in 2020, the San Diego Association is 41 years old, and includes many students, from young to old with diverse ethnic backgrounds, actively practicing Chado, The Way of Tea.

-Milton Saito, President of Urasenke Tankokai San Diego Association







斎藤ミルトンー裏千家淡交会サンディエゴ協会 会長

North America Chado Relay Commences Tomorrow, September 2, 2020

The Urasenke Tankokai North America Advisory Committee will start the Chado Relay on September 2, to mark the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II. All 36 Urasenke Tankokai Associations in North America are on board for the Relay which will travel across North America before being passed to the next association. The relay is on online event through Facebook and Instagram and can be accessed by clicking here: Urasenke Tankokai North America Chado Relay / 裏千家淡交会北米茶道リレー. You are encouraged to “FOLLOW” and “LIKE” the Facebook and Instagram page.

In this collage, each picture represents a tea offering from one member to another member of Chado Toronto. (15 participants).

San Diego’s relay dates are November 1 and 2, 2020.

To further the efforts of fostering the Urasenke community in North America into the 21st century, the committee has also created a homepage for the Urasenke Tankokai Associations in North America. Click on www.urasenkenorthamerica.org to read the latest news and follow the Relay schedule.

You may have noticed updates to our own Urasenke Tankokai San Diego Association homepage. To align with the Urasenke North America Community, our own Association has revamped the website and created a San Diego Facebook and Instagram page. Icons have been added at the top of the homepage for easy access to our social media platforms. You are encouraged to “FOLLOW” and “LIKE” San Diego’s pages to further create stronger ties between members and associations, to show colleagues around the world how we are continuing our tea practices during this pandemic, and to spread the spirit of “harmony, respect, purity and tranquility.”

Urasenke Tankokai North America Chado Relay / 裏千家淡交会北米茶道リレー

これらのページにアクセスして、”FOLLOW” また “LIKE”ボタンを押してください。


既にお気づきかと思いますが、裏千家淡交会北米地区のホームページ開設に合わせて、裏千家淡交会サンディエゴ協会のホームページもアップデートをいたしました。サンディエゴ協会のフェイスブック FacebookとインスタグラムInstagramのアカウントも開設いたしました。これらのソーシャルメディアに簡単にアクセスできるように、ホームページのトップにボタンを付けてあります。これらのページにアクセスして、”FOLLOW” また “LIKE”ボタンを押してください。サンディエゴ協会の私たちが、また他の協会の方々ともより強くつながり、このパンデミック下でもこうしてお茶のお稽古を続けていることを世界中のお茶友に知らせ、「和敬清寂」の心を広めていきましょう。

55th Hatsugama 2020
第55回 初釜

On January 5, 2020, the first tea of the year known as hatsugama (which means “first kettle”) was held at the Marina Village Conference Center’s Bayview Room located in Mission Bay, San Diego. Urasenke Tankokai San Diego Association’s Soshin Saito sensei and her students served tea with sweets and lunch boxes to 140 guests to celebrate the new year.

The Members of Urasenke Tankokai San Diego Association at 2020 Hatsugama with Saito Soshin sensei in the middle front row

This Year of the Rat, the students demonstrated yachiyodana 八千代棚 and misonodana 御園棚. Yachiyodana is a kind of portable shelf which was favored by Tantansai 淡々斎 14th Urasenke Grandmaster. It was arranged from the original tabidansu 旅箪笥, the “travel cabinet” that Sen Rikyu 千利休 designed.




Moon Viewing Chakai 2019

On September 14, 2019, the annual moon-viewing chakai by Urasenke San Diego was held at the United Church of Christ in Bay Park, San Diego. This year’s lecture was on Taijiquan by Master Peter Wu. Along with a wonderful demonstration, Master Wu taught beginners easy-to-understand movements, and the guests were able to experience these movements together. Immediately after the lecture, all guests enjoyed a Japanese lunch box. As the full moon began to shine in the night sky, everyone was served sweets and tea, while viewing the misono-dana tea procedure.


54th Hatsugama 2019
第54回 初釜

On January 13th, 2019, the first tea gathering of the year known as hatsugama (which means “first kettle”) was held at the Bayview Room at Marina Village Conference Center in Mission Bay, San Diego. Urasenke Tankokai San Diego Association’s Soshin sensei and the students served tea with sweets and lunch boxes for about 150 guests to celebrate the new year. 



This year, the students demonstrated nagaita sokazari 長板総飾り and misonodana御園棚.  The weather was sunny and it was a perfect day to share tea with the guests. 



53th Hatsugama 2018
第53回 初釜

On January 14, 2018, the first tea of the year known as hatsugama (which means “first kettle”) was held at the Marina Village Conference Center’s Bayview Room located in Mission Bay, San Diego. Urasenke Tankokai San Diego Association’s Soshin Saito sensei and her students served tea with sweets and lunch boxes to the guests to celebrate the new year.

This year is the year of the Dog. The students demonstrated chasen-kazari 茶筅荘, which means “tea whisk display,” which is a method of preparing tea when a water vessel of special distinction is used.



Urasenke Tea Demonstration and Chado Class at the Japanese Friendship Garden

Urasenke San Diego will resume our monthly demonstration at the Japanese Friendship Garden in Balboa Park on Saturday, September 9th, 2017. The demonstration is free for visitors who already have garden admission.

For people who are interested in taking chado classes at the Japanese Friendship Garden, a five-session introductory class will start on September 16th. Please visit the garden’s website at http://www.niwa.org/jfg-events/urasenketea for more information, and to register for this class.



Cherry Blossom Festival 2017 2017年桜祭り

The annual Cherry Blossom Festival will be held at the Japanese Friendship Garden in Balboa Park, San Diego, from March 10th -12th 2017. On Saturday 11th, Urasenke San Diego will be holding demonstrations of chado-the Way of Tea- from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m continuously. Please join us!