TJC Apache Belles and Band to perform for U.S. troops in Japan

Tyler Junior College:

TYLER (KYTX) - The Tyler Junior College Apache Belles and Apache Band are preparing to spend their spring break in Japan, where they will entertain U.S. troops stationed at Yokosuka and Atsugi Naval Bases near Tokyo.

Nearly 100 travelers, including the TJC performance groups, alumni, parents and staff members, will be taking the 11-day trip from March 8-18.

The Apache Belles and Band will perform a Texas-themed show for the military audiences as well as for citizens and dignitaries in Yachiyo, which is a Tyler Sister City.

"A delegation from Yachiyo visited Tyler in late 2012, so we are excited to reconnect with our Yachiyo friends and return the gesture of camaraderie that they so graciously showed us during their Texas visit," said Dr. Kim Russell, TJC vice president of advancement and external affairs, who is leading the TJC contingent to Japan.

For months, the students have been raising funds for their trip and working on their performance routines.

"Our travel to Japan and the goodwill mission of this trip go to the very heart of what TJC does for its students," said Apache Belles Director Jasilyn Schaefer.

In addition the military and Yachiyo performances, the TJC group will visit Tokyo Disneyland, see the many shrines and sites of Tokyo and the surrounding area, Lake Ashi and, weather permitting, get an up-close look at Mt. Fuji.

"This will be an unforgettable cultural and educational experience for these students," Russell said.

"Not only will they be performing for our troops and representing TJC and Tyler, they will be experiencing a place unlike anything they've ever seen before. This will be the experience of a lifetime."


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