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Monthly Newsletter | May 2021
We are open!

Since March 6, we have been open to public on weekends (Saturdays & Sundays) with slightly shortened hours from 10:30am to 3:30pm. Group visits by appointment only. We will closely monitor the pandemic situation and may extend the reopening to some weekdays in the coming months. We have established protocols to ensure the safely of our visitors, volunteers and staff.
| From the Executive Director|

As Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month comes to a close, various individuals and organizations in the AAPI community are still voicing concerns over systemic anti-Asian racism and hate, and calling for a future of mutual understanding, continued healing and solidarity. CAMOC is proud to play a role in such a voice.

Not only did we launch four virtual events and a vigorous social media campaign with postings of different themes each week in May, we also participated in a virtual roundtable event hosted by Saint Louis University to address the issues of anti-Asian racism and violence as well as a townhall meeting hosted by ABC7 to explore diverse Asian communities in Chicago. More importantly, CAMOC joined forces with other AAPI organizations to support the Teaching Equitable Asian American Community History (TEAACH) Act which will add Asian American history to Illinois School Code.

There is a Chinese chengyu or idiom called “眾志成城” (zhòng zhì chéng chéng) meaning our wills unite like a fortress. Our united voice was heard by the legislators. The TEAACH Act passed the Illinois House on April 14 with a bipartisan vote of 98-13, and then the Senate on May 25 with a vote of 57-0! Because the bill was amended slightly in the Senate, it needs to be voted on again in the House in what's called a concurrence vote.

CAMOC also co-sponsored a number of important AAPI events in Chicago Chinatown: “We Love Chinatown” on May 16, “Proud to be Asian” on May 22, and “Solidarity against AAPI Hate” rally at the Chinese American Veterans Memorial on May 31. We believe that if all of us can do our part in promoting a just and inclusive society, systemic racism and hate will eventually fade away. We are all in this together!

Last but not least, let us pay tribute to a great hero and leader, Bernie Wong, who devoted her whole life serving the immigrant and AAPI community. Hundreds of people said goodbye to her at her memorial service and funeral mass that showed how much she was loved and respected.


Ben Lau
Executive Director
| May Highlights|

Thank You for Joining Us for
"Our Stories Your Museum"!
Thank you to everyone who joined us for Our Stories Your Museum on May 29! Our Associate Board, Board of Directors, and staff shared personal stories about their heritage and hopes for the future. They educated viewers about the TEAACH Act and how to fight anti-Asian racism. Programming also included an inside look at the Collections department, recent events at the Museum, and CAMOC's history and recovery since the fire.

If you were not able to join us or would like to re-watch the video, please click on the link below. It is available for viewing on our YouTube channel. Thank you for your support and for making this AAPI Heritage Month a special one!
ABC7 Eyewitness News Features CAMOC for
AAPI Heritage Month Series
ED Ben Lau joined ABC7 Eyewitness News to share the Museum's mission, current exhibitions, and participation in Chinatown's May 22 event Proud to Be Asian. The channel's Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month series spotlights the communities' news, contributions, and much more. To watch the coverage, please click on the button below.
CAMOC ED Ben Lau Joins ABC7 Town Hall Meeting
"OUR CHICAGO: Voices of the Community"
ABC7 Reporter Stacey Baca explores the interesting story of how and why these communities decided to settle in Chicago. Members of Chicago's Asian American and Pacific Islander communities joined the discussion to share how this very diverse group has made its mark in certain neighborhoods, on the local restaurant scene, with small businesses, and by establishing cultural and community centers. How have these enclaves evolved or expanded, and what are the issues of most importance now and for the future?

Other guests in addition to ED Ben Lau included: Jean Mishima from the Japanese American Historical Society, Dr. Evelyn de Asis Natividad from the National Federation of Filipino American Associations, Tejas Shah from the Indo-American Center, and Yoon Tae Kim from The Korean Cultural Center of Chicago. To watch the full meeting, click on the button below.
"Era of Opulence: Chinese Fine Dining"
Featured on NBC5
CAMOC's new mini exhibition "Era of Opulence: Chinese Fine Dining" was featured on NBC5. Reporter Vi Nguyen talked with Immediate Past President and Chair of Exhibitions Committee Soo Lon Moy about the first Chinese restaurants in Chicago and how the industry has changed over the decades. The mini exhibition opened on March 24, 2021, and will be up for viewing until September 26, 2021.
CAMOC Co-Sponsors "Solidarity Against AAPI Hate" Event
Board Vice President (OCA Chicago President) Mabel Menard attended the "Solidarity Against AAPI Hate" Event on May 31 at the Chinese American Veterans Memorial with ED Ben Lau. She delivered a brief speech.
CAMOC Co-Sponsors "I Love Chinatown" Event
The "We Love Chinatown" event on May 16 drew people from across the city to celebrate AAPI Heritage Month and support Chinatown businesses. ED Ben Lau spoke to the crowd and promoted CAMOC's May 26 event "Our Stories Your Museum." Thank you for continuing to support our community!

(Photos courtesy of Ying Fu)
CAMOC Co-Sponsors "Proud to Be Asian" Event
(Right to left) Ed Ben Lau, Immediate Past President Soo Lon Moy, Life Director Dr. Kim K. Tee, and volunteer Viable Shum manned a CAMOC table at the "Proud to Be Asian" event on May 22 in Chinatown Square. They shared information about the Museum's events and programming with the public. Thank you for celebrating AAPI Heritage Month with us!
Paper Cutting Arts Workshop (剪纸 / Jian Zhi)
with Lucy P. Liu
Our last event of the month was this Paper Cutting Arts Workshop (剪纸 / Jian Zhi) with CAMOC Artist-in-Residence Lucy P. Liu. Co-hosted by the Chicago History Museum, this event reached CHM members, as well as CAMOC's community. Lucy shared her background as a Chinese paper-cutting artist and specific skills and techniques. Thank you to all who joined us for the event, and stay tuned for more workshops from Lucy!

| Upcoming Events |
Angel Island Virtual Tour
Date: Wednesday, June 9, 2021
Time: 6:00 - 7:00pm CT (4:00 - 5:00pm PT)
Location: Zoom

Join the Chinese American Museum of Chicago and the Angel Island State Park for a virtual tour on Wednesday, June 9, 2021 from 6:00 - 7:00pm CTT (4:00 - 5:00pm PT). The tour will be led by State Park Interpreter II Casey Dexter-Lee.

The Immigration Station at Angel Island served as an immigration port between 1910 and 1940, designed to process Chinese immigrants whose entry was restricted by the Chinese Exclusion Law of 1882. During its 30 years of operation, Angel Island was the point of entry for most of the approximately 175,000 Chinese immigrants who came to the United States.

About Casey
Casey Dexter-Lee has lived and worked at Angel Island State Park for 20 years. She helped pilot the PORTS, distance-learning program at the park, and became a lead to volunteers and interpretive staff. Casey has been in charge of the educational programs on the island since 2017 and was part of the team that developed the park’s Interpretation Master Plan. She was the park’s lead on the exhibit design team for the Angel Island Immigration Museum, which will open in 2021. Casey is a graduate of UC Santa Cruz where she studied history and education.

Register for the FREE virtual tour by clicking the button below.
CAMOC's New Membership Program

Becoming a member is a simple and effective way to get involved with the Chinese-American Museum of Chicago. Your membership represents a personal investment in the Museum and ensures the continuation of the wide array of quality exhibitions, programs, and events we bring to the community. In addition, you are affirming the importance of the Museum’s commitment to bring the Chinese-American experience in the Midwest to as many people as possible.

$150 = Free event admission for member & 3 guests for 1 year

$100 = Free event admission for member & 1 guest for 1 year

$60 = Free event admission for member only for 1 year

$30 = Free event admission for seniors & students for 1 year
$500 = Corporate Membership for 1 year (with 10 individual memberships, recognition in program & on plaque)

For Members who support us beyond the basic level, we offer extra recognition and the following benefits:

$250 = Bronze (Honorary Membership)
$500 = Silver (Honorary Membership)
$1,000 = Gold (Lifetime Membership or a small donor brick)
$1,500 = Platinum (Lifetime Membership and a small donor brick)
$5,000 = Diamond (Large donor brick)
$5,500 = Jade (Large donor brick plus Lifetime Membership)

You can read the full list of benefits on our website by clicking the button below. There are also instructions on how to join at the bottom of the page, along with the Membership Form.

| A Call For Volunteers! |
We are looking for dedicated, reliable, and energetic individuals who would like to experience our historic institution from the inside — as volunteers! We need volunteers for docents, greeters and special events. If you are interested in volunteering for us, please use the button below to visit our related page and download a volunteer form.
CAMOC Together Against COVID-19 Special Collection
An old Chinese saying, 時勢造英雄 (Shíshì zào yīngxióng ), which means a hero is made in the time of misfortune aptly describes how people rally together in the pandemic. During this challenging time we are deeply moved by the proactive steps and incredible acts of generosity and support exhibited by the Chinese Americans. Thousands of individuals and organizations have been raising money, donating personal protective equipment, and providing free meals to those in need, especially to front-line healthcare workers and others. CAMOC is inviting you to help us preserve these heroic moments by sharing the stories to our Together Against Covid-19 Special Collection.

CAMOC started this special collection with the goal of recording the experiences and stories of individuals, families, and organizations during these unprecedented times. The Together Against Covid-19 Collection will include various forms of content, which can be photos, videos, articles, audios, letters, paintings, certificates, or any form you can think of. If you are not sure whether your content fits our collection or you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Please send your story to covid19@ccamuseum.org , with the subject Together Against Covid-19 Collection. And please include your contact information , including full name, organization or community if applicable, email, phone number, and mailing address.
About Us

The mission of the Chinese American Museum of Chicago - Raymond B. & Jean T. Lee Center (CAMOC) is is to advance the appreciation of Chinese American culture through exhibitions, education, and research and to preserve the past, present, and future of Chinese Americans primarily in the Midwest.

The museum building, formerly the Quong Yick Co., is located in Chicago's Chinatown, at 238 West 23rd Street in Chicago. The Museum opened to the public on May 21, 2005. After a devastating fire in September of 2008, the Museum was closed for renovation and reopened in 2010.

CAMOC is governed by the Board of Directors of the Chinatown Museum Foundation (CMF), a 501(C)(3) non-profit corporation located in Chicago, Illinois.