After months of negotiations, Tokyo American Club and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) have finalized the contract for the Club to be the venue for USA House during the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
The Club will serve as Team USA's hospitality hub during the Summer Games, which run from July 24 to August 9 next year.
"This event promises to be a truly historic moment for our Club and full of unique opportunities and experiences for Members," said Michael Alfant, the Club's representative governor, in an e-mail to Members.
In the lead-up to the Olympics, the Club expects to welcome a number of different US teams and athletes as they perform in test events at the various venues.
Members eating at the Club's first-floor restaurants will see improved and new items on menus from February 1.
Burger lovers will enjoy succulent patties of chuck, clod and brisket, inspired by a recipe by New York celebrity butcher Pat LaFrieda.
“This fantastic mix brings a deeper beef flavor to our burgers,” says Lindsay Gray, the Club’s executive chef, of the chargrill-friendly patty blend.
Diners at Rainbow Café and Café Med can expect juicier rib eye and strip loin steaks, made from US Choice-grade, corn- and grain-fed beef.
The Club's pastry and bread selection now includes sourdough, 10-grain whole wheat and gluten-free chickpea and fava bean options, as well as freshly baked croissants and pains au chocolat.
Meanwhile, the Club's new supplier of eggs is Atsumi Farm in Aichi Prefecture, which feeds its hens a nutritious diet of corn grain, oak sap, Japanese mugwort leaves and seaweed.
Members showed their generosity during the Club's December charity drive for Animal Refuge Kansai (ARK), an animal shelter and rescue organization in Tokyo and Osaka.
Donations included dog and cat food, toys, litter mats and pet carriers.
The campaign kicked off at the Library's Christmas Story Time on December 1 and ran until the end of the month.
A nonprofit, ARK has rehomed thousands of cats and dogs since its founding in 1990.
Photo (l–r): Club senior librarian Drew Damron, Women's Group President Heidi Regent and ARK's Machiko Nakano
Ninety children will be unwrapping wish-list gifts this Christmas thanks to the generosity of Members during the Women's Group's Salvation Army Angel Campaign.
The campaign, which ran for five weeks from November 6, saw Members buy requested items for children abandoned or separated from their families and living in Tokyo-area Salvation Army homes.
Colonel Cheryl Maynor says the "extremely important" campaign was the first of its kind for the Salvation Army in Japan.
"It is the impact of the gift of kindness that is the greatest gift," she says. "Each child will open a present, a personalized gift with their name on it. They will know someone thought of them, they will know someone knows their name. This is a lasting gift, to be remembered."
Photo (l–r): Salvation Army colonels Kenneth and Cheryl Maynor, Women's Group director of charities Tomomi Fujita and Isako Sekiguchi
The Club has opened a book of condolence for former US President George HW Bush (pictured), who passed away on November 30.
The former vice president under Ronald Reagan served as the 41st president of the United States from 1989 to 1993.
Members are invited to sign the book, which is placed in the Formal Lobby (1F), through December 9.
The Stars and Stripes at the entrance to the Club will fly at half-staff until December 30.