KPC students fold good fortune

KPC students fold good fortune

The Kenai Senior Center received a special gift from Kenai Peninsula College students on Tuesday in the form of 1,000 origami cranes.

Each crane was made by hand by a student in Yasuko Lehtinen’s Japanese language class over the students’ spring break. Once they had made 1,000, the cranes were strung together to create a hanging mobile now on display in the senior center’s card room.

In Japanese culture, there is a legend that anyone who folds 1,000 origami cranes will be granted a wish to use for themselves or to gift to others, Lehtinen said.The crane is a sacred animal in Japan, and is said to live for 1,000 years, so origami is folded for each year of a crane’s life. Often the cranes will be made in hopes of a quick recovery from an illness, or will be given to a newlywed couple, representing a wish of 1,000 years of happiness and prosperity.

On Tuesday afternoon, KPC students brought their origami cranes to the Kenai Senior Center as a gift.

“In Japan, if you want to do something for someone, you make them 1,000 cranes and it will bring them a miracle. So we made 1,000 cranes for the senior center,” said Juliet Weaver, one of Lehtinen’s students.

Rachel Craig, director of the senior center, hung the crane display in the senior center’s card room, where they will remain on display. They are looking to have a plaque made to commemorate the gift, she said.

“What a great, great thing for the seniors,” Kathy Romain, the senior center’s administrative assistant, said. “It will be very much enjoyed by many people.”

The senior center has worked with Kenai Peninsula College in the past and are excited to receive the class’s gift, Craig said.

“We do a lot of intergenerational work with KPC,” she said. “We’ve done art classes with them and have had learning resource centers come over. This is fun, to have this language class come over.”

According to Lehtinen, she had been hoping to complete this project for several years but never had a class of students who were dedicated to the task of folding all 1,000 cranes. This year, though, the students were excited at the opportunity and learned a lot from the experience, she said.

“This is education, we’re teaching,” Lehtinen said. “The American people don’t know a lot of things about Japanese culture.”

Kat Sorensen can be reached at

More in News

Gary Porter, owner of Bald Mountain Air Service, stands in front of his Twin Otter airplane Friday, Oct. 22. (Photo by Sarah Knapp/Homer News)
City Council passes aircraft flat tax rate

The Homer City Council held a public hearing for Ordinance 21-62 concerning a flat tax on aircrafts.

Amelie Bignell, of Soldotna, drops a treat in the bucket of Hayden Jones, of Soldotna, on Saturday, Oct. 31, 2020, at a “trunk-or-treat” event at Orca Theatre on Kalifornsky Beach Road in Alaska. Jones was dressed as Vampirina. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
All Halloween all weekend

A sinister performance, pumpkin carving contest, food drive, pet microchip event and multiple trick-or-treats are on the docket.

Bill Elam (center) nominates Brent Hibbert to be president of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly on Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2021 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Johnson elected assembly president; Hibbert to be vice president

Prior to Tuesday, Johnson, who represents Kasilof, served as the assembly’s vice president.

Homer Senior Citizen Center residents participated in a worldwide Televeda bingo event to set a Guinness world record on Friday, Oct. 22. (Photo by Sarah Knapp/Homer News)
Homer senior citizens help break world record

The game was held to fight against social isolation in senior communities caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

This illustration provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in January 2020 shows the 2019 Novel Coronavirus. (CDC)
State hospitalizations still on the rise

Despite a decrease in cases, the state is still seeing hospitalization surge.

The Seward welcome sign is photographed in July 2021. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Seward vice mayor and council member resigns

The council accept the resignation of Tony Baclaan during its Monday night meeting.

Ben Mohr watches Kenai River Junior Classic participants head out to fish on the Kenai River in Soldotna, Alaska, on Wednesday, Aug. 11, 2021. (Camille Botello / Peninsula Clarion)
Mohr resigns as director of KRSA

He has been the executive director of KRSA for nearly three years.

Heather and Hunter Phillips walk through the Kenai Community Library Haunted Hunt with their mom Kumi Phillips on Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2021. (Camille Botello/Peninsula Clarion)
Scary reads

Spooky literary characters come to life at Kenai library haunted house.

Most Read