The Fifth Annual Law Day Yosemite will be held Friday, April 28, 2017, at Half Dome Village (formerly known as Curry Village) in Yosemite Valley. The program, which runs from 10 a.m. to noon, is open to the public and park entrance fees will be waived for attendees.
President Eisenhower set May 1 as Law Day to celebrate the rule of law and equal rights. Courts and bar associations across the country now participate in the observance, which generally occurs over several weeks in April and May.

The 2017 Law Day Yosemite includes an essay contest for grammar school students. The theme relates to a time when constitutional principles were set aside in the interest of national security. In 1942, not long after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Executive Orders issued by the president led to a curfew for people of Japanese descent. This was followed by the forcible relocation of some 110,000 people of Japanese, most of them United States citizens, from the West Coast to internment camps in remote areas of California, Idaho, Arizona and other states.
Eighth graders from 10 elementary schools at the gateways to Yosemite National Park are participating in the essay contest. Their compositions will have been judged for understanding of the subject, originality of thought, argumentation and organization. Three finalists will be recognized and the winning essay read at the Law Day event. The finalists will win Apple personal computing devices.

Law Day Yosemite 2017 will also host students from Sacramento’s Florin High School Law Academy, 70 home-schooled students and teachers form the Sacramento area, inner city youth from Fresno and from East Palo Alto. We expect approximately 400 attendees to enjoy presentations by the Senior Judge A. Wallace Tashima of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and the Reverend Sabado Masada and his wife, Marion Masada, of Fresno who travel across the country to address the internment with students. All three speakers were interned as children.

The commemoration will begin with music from the award-winning Mariposa High School Marching Band and introduction of attending state and federal judge’s and other dignitaries. The National Park Service Mounted Ranger Horse Patrol will present the colors, followed by a beautiful solo rendition of the National Anthem, and Yosemite first graders will lead all in the Pledge of Allegiance. One of a kind designed Law Day lapel pins, snacks and lunches will be provided for all students.

Law Day Yosemite is sponsored by the San Joaquin Valley Chapter of the Federal Bar Association, in conjunction with the Park Concessionaire, Yosemite Hospitality LLC, and the National Park Service. The public is invited. For more information, please contact Carol Moses, or call (559) 449-9069.

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