The oldest continuing public demonstration of karate in the United States returns with the 56th annual Nisei Week Karate Exhibition. Karate — which means “open hand” — is a discipline of body and mind that has captivated both bricks and imagination over the decades it's risen to public prominence. By the 1930s, downtown's Little Tokyo represented the heart of the Japanese-American community, at the time the largest in the United States. Nisei Week began as a way for young Japanese-Americans to celebrate their culture and propel commerce toward Little Tokyo. In 1957, judo black belt Tatsuo Inouye led the first official public demonstration at the still-standing Koyasan Buddhist Temple in the center of Little Tokyo. Fighters and competitors from dojos all over the world compete in this year's exposition — but it's not like they've spent all year waiting to settle scores. Karate ain't like that. In the wise words of Master Iwao Tamotsu: “Power without the right conviction is mere violence, but the right conviction without power is useless.” Braun Gymnasium, Caltech Braun Athletic Center, 1200 E. California Blvd., Pasadena; Sat., Aug. 4, 10:30 a.m.; free. (213) 437-0988 or (626) 395-6146,

Sat., Aug. 4, 10:30 a.m., 2012

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