The Year of The Tiger
2010 - The Year of the Tiger is Sensei Frank Woon-A-Tai's year of birth (1950). It was indeed, a luckly and productive year for him and ISKF Karate with eight successful major projects:
In September, Ontario Karate College held it Camp again at White Pine in Haliburton. Special Guest of Honour was Master Teruyuki Okazaki, 10th Dan, the only remaining active student of Karate Founder, Master Gichin Funakoshi. In 2011, he turns 80 and is still training and visiting over 60 ISKF countries worldwide. Assisting him were Ontario 5th Dan and above Instructors and New Brunswick Instructor, David Pyke, 6th Dan, and PEI Instructor, Janice Pyke, 5th Dan. In 2011, Dr. Dexter Shim, 7th Dan and Frieda Shim, 6th Dan, will join these same instructors at White Pine again. This is in keeping with OKC's policy of using and recognising highly qualified home grown instructors to teach in Canada.
2010 OKC Camp Instructors with Master Okazaki
At the nationals this year in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Ontario recaptured the 'Men's Team Kata' Trophy after a few years of placing third. Congratulations to Matt Moody, Nazim Abdulla, and Ken Woon-A-Tai for their hard work! Watch out for Michelle Woon-A-Tai, 3rd Dan, who after four children is once again active.
In August, Sensei Woon-A-Tai hosted the 11th ISKF Pan American Karate Championships in Georgetown, Guyana. It was a huge success and among the highlights, was a visit by ISKF Masters, ISKF Technical Committee, and several Kodansha to State House with His Excellency, President Bharrat Jagdeo of Guyana. President Jagdeo granted an acre of land to the Guyana Karate College to build its headquarters. A complete report on the Pan Ams is forthcoming.
ISKF Officials with His Excellency President Bharrat Jagdeo. November 2010
Judge Paul Ribner, Frank Woon-A-Tai, Mayor Hamilton Green, Master Teruyuki Okazaki
Prior to the championships, Master Okazaki was presented with the 'Key to the City of Georgetown' by the Honourable Hamilton Green, Mayor of Georgetown.
In November, Sensei Woon-A-Tai and the Honourable Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport, Dr. Frank Anthony turned the sod to commence the building of the dojo, which will feature dorms, a huge training area, offices and a Japanese Garden.
In May, application was made to the City of Toronto to build the new dojo of the Ontario Karate College, Headquarters of ISKF Canada and ISKF Ontario. If everything goes according to plan, construction will begin in Spring 2012 with an opening in Spring 2013.
New HQ Dojo on Ground Floor
In November, the Toronto Karate Daigaku held its Opening Ceremony with several honoured and prominent guests. Thanks to the financial backing of Dr. David Barrett and Roger Barrett, this became a reality. It is expected to attract one thousand new members in a few years. The dojo boasts 'State of the Art Facilties' and the best instructors in Canada. Dr. Barrett calls it the 'Harvard University of Karate'.
Toronto Karate Daigaku
Sensei Woon-A-Tai has now opened a dojo in Suriname and will oversee its development.
As well, French Guiana is also coming on board the ISKF Family. This will bring the three cultures together in karate- English, Dutch and French.
In closing, Sensei Woon-A-Tai would like to wish all members and friends Season Greetings, a very Merry Christmas, and the very best for the New Year!