YONGSAN GARRISON, Republic of Korea - Hundreds of Yongsan community members welcomed the summer of 2009 with a Memorial Day Block Party at the Main Post Club parking lot Saturday, May 23.

It rained all morning, but by noon the sky cleared for perfect weather.

The U.S. Army Garrison-Yongsan Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation hosted the party to kick off what is expected to be a very long and hot summer.

"We prepared a lot of exciting activities and band performances today," said FMWR Community Recreation Division Chief Eric Yim. "I hope today will be a good indication of many more fun fairs and parties to come in the summer."

The party started off with a Korean rock band performance by the World Aid Band, which was followed by a stunning performance by DJ Shine, a famous Korean-American rapper.

"I was born and raised in New York," said DJ Shine. "I also have many friends who are enlisted in the U.S. Army. I just want to let everyone know how much I appreciate what the Army is doing for both the U.S. and Korea."

Hula hoop and limbo contests ensured that the crowd stayed engaged and had a good time as active participants rather than idle spectators.

A ballet performance by the Child Youth and School Services School of Knowledge, Inspiration, Exploration, and Skills program, the exotic Hula and Tahitian dance performance and the vibrant Salsa dance performance also drew the attention of families who attended the party.

"I liked how they mixed up a variety of performances," said Spc. Timothy Blackmon. "I came here with my wife and daughter and we just had a blast."

U.S. Airline Alliance, Mr. Lee Heung-koo, President of Kumkang Incorporated, The Westin Chosun Seoul Hotel, American Forces Spouses Club, American Women's Club Thrift Shop Association, and the Korean-Foreigners Friendship Cultural Society sponsored the event.

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