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Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan

Welcome to Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni’s official website. MCAS Iwakuni is the only Marine Corps installation on the mainland of Japan.
Spouses make sushi, build camaraderie

By Lance Cpl. Alissa P. Schuning | Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni | February 22, 2014

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Michiyo Okazaki, a Japanese volunteer, demonstrates how to make Norimaki during a sushi making class hosted by the Marauders Spouse Club, Feb. 22, 2014, aboard Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan. The Marauders Spouse Club offered the class to spouses and guests from all units aboard station.

Michiyo Okazaki, a Japanese volunteer, demonstrates how to make Norimaki during a sushi making class hosted by the Marauders Spouse Club, Feb. 22, 2014, aboard Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan. The Marauders Spouse Club offered the class to spouses and guests from all units aboard station. (Photo by Lance Cpl. Alissa P. Schuning)


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Michiyo Okazaki, a Japanese volunteer, demonstrates how to make Norimaki during a sushi making class hosted by the Marauders Spouse Club, Feb. 22, 2014, aboard Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan. The Marauders Spouse Club has found that events involving the Japanese culture are the most popular among the spouses.

Michiyo Okazaki, a Japanese volunteer, demonstrates how to make Norimaki during a sushi making class hosted by the Marauders Spouse Club, Feb. 22, 2014, aboard Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan. The Marauders Spouse Club has found that events involving the Japanese culture are the most popular among the spouses. (Photo by Lance Cpl. Alissa P. Schuning)


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Kieu Garcia, personal financial manager with Marine Corps Community Services, makes Norimaki sushi during a sushi making class hosted by the Marauders Spouse Club, Feb. 22, 2014, aboard Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan. The Marauders Spouse Club offered the class to spouses and guests from all units aboard station.

Kieu Garcia, personal financial manager with Marine Corps Community Services, makes Norimaki sushi during a sushi making class hosted by the Marauders Spouse Club, Feb. 22, 2014, aboard Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan. The Marauders Spouse Club offered the class to spouses and guests from all units aboard station. (Photo by Lance Cpl. Alissa P. Schuning)


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Keijiro Akiyama, owner of Akiyama Sushi, shows spouses how to make Norimaki sushi during a sushi making class hosted by the Marauders Spouse Club, Feb. 22, 2014, aboard Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan. Akiyama brought other forms of sushi for the attendees to enjoy before the class began.

Keijiro Akiyama, owner of Akiyama Sushi, shows spouses how to make Norimaki sushi during a sushi making class hosted by the Marauders Spouse Club, Feb. 22, 2014, aboard Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan. Akiyama brought other forms of sushi for the attendees to enjoy before the class began. (Photo by Lance Cpl. Alissa P. Schuning)


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Keijiro Akiyama, owner of Akiyama Sushi, and Michiyo Okazaki, a Japanese volunteer, demonstrate how to make Norimaki during a sushi making class hosted by the Marauders Spouse Club, Feb. 22, 2014, aboard Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan. The Marauders Spouse Club is one of the longest lasting spouse clubs aboard station.

Keijiro Akiyama, owner of Akiyama Sushi, and Michiyo Okazaki, a Japanese volunteer, demonstrate how to make Norimaki during a sushi making class hosted by the Marauders Spouse Club, Feb. 22, 2014, aboard Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan. The Marauders Spouse Club is one of the longest lasting spouse clubs aboard station. (Photo by Lance Cpl. Alissa P. Schuning)


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MARINE CORPS AIR STATION IWAKUNI, Japan --

The Marauders Spouse Club hosted a sushi making class for station residents, Feb. 22, 2014, aboard Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan.

Keijiro Akiyama, owner of Akiyama Sushi, along with other Japanese volunteers, donated their time to teach spouses how to make Norimaki.

Norimaki is a type of sushi consisting of rice, seafood and other foods rolled in dried seaweed sheets.

“It’s a great opportunity for the spouses to get the chance to learn how to make sushi and learn about the Japanese culture,” said Teresa Castaneda, Marauders Spouse Club president.

Sushi is one of the most famous Japanese dishes from Japan and one of the most popular dishes among the Japanese themselves, according to http://www.japan-guide.com.

“What I discovered here is that if it involves the Japanese culture, the spouses tend to come out more,” said Lidia Gonzalez, a Marauders Spouse Club member.

Gonzalez, a long-time military spouse, explained that there is more focus placed on camaraderie between spouses overseas than back in the U.S. Spouse bonding becomes less of a priority with the extra distractions, more comfortable surroundings and a life outside of the military gates.

“As a club, we focus on bettering the spouses experience out here in Japan,” said Castaneda. “We are kind of isolated in a foreign country and getting to know our fellow spouses and our community makes it easier to adapt to a new place.”

Although the club membership is exclusive to spouses of Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 12, the event was open to spouses and guests from all units aboard station.

“Iwakuni is a very small base, so befriending spouses from other units is inevitable and they can benefit from these events also,” said Castaneda. “We only started inviting guests to our events a year and a half ago and so far, it has been an extremely positive experience. I am very supportive of all my fellow spouses and enjoy the opportunity to share with the spouse community.”

The Marauders Spouse Club is able to provide the spouses with these opportunities through the generosity of members and volunteers.

“We’ve gotten pretty lucky with the spouses in MALS-12. A lot of them have jobs, but still choose to volunteer,” explained Castaneda. “It’s a big thing because it’s taking time away from their families and time to relax, but they decide to come out and support the unit and the base.”

For most people, it’s not a simple task to just pick up and move to a foreign country, but the Marauders Spouse Club uses their time and energy to try to make the transition for spouses smoother and the experience better all around.

ImageIwakuni ImageJAPAN ImageMALS-12 Imagemarauders spouse club ImageSpouses ImageSushi

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