Wednesday, March 12th, 2008

(LOS ANGELES – March 12, 2008) Now entering its 7th year, the Martial Arts Arena at the Cherry Blossom Festival – Southern California continues to draw a steady crowd. Taking place on April 5th and 6th in the Little Tokyo district of downtown Los Angeles, this event is FREE and is produced by a 100% volunteer team and underwritten by private donations and sponsors.

Volunteers Gary Endo, Arnold A. Noche and Gary Quan have been handling their business in the “arena” since the inception of the festival at the Pasadena Convention Center back in 2002.

“My involvement with this festival was an honest attempt to introduce the Warrior Arts of the Philippines to yet another audience,” said Noche, a guro from Lameco SOG. “We’ve been blessed to have so many FMA groups come through in the past (Doce Pares, Lameco Eskrima, Modern Arnis, Pakamut, San Miguel Eskrima) but this year, we’re taking it up a notch with all the mainstream exposure that we’ve been getting.”

Perhaps a “notch” is an understatement as this year’s FMA portion of the festival will feature delegates from the following disciplines of the Filipino Martial Arts.

In alphabetical order:

Master Rick Mitchell (Balintawak Eskrima –
Master Christopher Ricketts (Kali Ilustrisimo –
Master Felix Roiles (Pakamut –
Master Jose Tan (Modified Tapado –

Guro Arturo “Dino” Flores (Lameco SOG)
Guro Pedro “Pete” Israel (Harbor Kickboxing / PI Kali)
Guro Willie B. Laureano (Inosanto-Laureano Pag-Kali Kali)

The Martial Arts Arena will feature non-stop action from open to close. The FMA portion of the festival will take place on Sunday, April 6th at 1:00pm.

Other martial arts groups scheduled to perform are as follows:

  • Aikido Institute of America
  • Atemi Ryu Jujitsu
  • California Sumo Association
  • Capoiera Batuque
  • Center for Practical Self Defense
  • Goltz Judo Club
  • Grappling / MMA – Villa Park
  • Harmony Aikido
  • IMB Academy
  • Jinenkan
  • Kage No Michi Ninjutsu
  • Krav Maga
  • Monterey Park Karate Club
  • Monterey Park Wu Shu
  • New Breed – Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
  • Northern Shoalim
  • Ohana Academy of Martial Arts
  • Paramount Karate
  • Shindo Muso Ryu
  • Shinkendo
  • Sityodtong/Muay Thai
  • South Bay Self Defense
  • Westside Kendo

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