The Oakland Raiders celebrated Asian Heritage this past Sunday when the Silver and Black upset the Cincinnati Bengals 20-17 at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum. The festivities included a full half-time performance by local martial arts schools in dedication to late grandmaster Bruce Lee. The Raiders paid tribute to Lee and the grandmasters from the participating schools in a pre-game ceremony to recognize their contributions to the education and practice of Asian martial arts.
"We are pleased to add our celebration of Asian Heritage to the many ways in which we share with our global fan base our commitment to multicultural initiatives," said Raiders Chief Executive Amy Trask.
Grandmasters Ralph Castro, Ernie Reyes, Jack Wada, Scott Coker, Doc Fai Wong, Cung Le, Brian Schwartz, Jordan Pallen, Chris Jensen, Roger Hamilton and Richard Brandon were honored prior to kickoff. The ceremony recognized their outstanding efforts as promoters of martial arts. The Raider organization and the grandmasters paid tribute to Bruce Lee by dedicating the cultural half-time performance to him. Lee is considered to be the most influential martial artist of the 20th century.
Bay Area-native Neyshia Go performed the National Anthem. Go comes from a Chinese and Filipino cultural background. She has won numerous local and California State singing competitions and was an American Idol top-50 finalist in 2008.
ESMG World, a leader in multicultural marketing, produced the half-time show in conjunction with The Silver and Black. The Asian cultural presentation featured diverse martial arts demonstrations representative of Japan, China, Korea and the Philippines. The martial arts showcase included aikido, san shou, kung fu, tai chi, lion and dragon dancing, taekwondo, shaolin kenpo, shotokan, kajukenbo, Philippines' martial arts, Filipino stick fighting, wushu, karate, and mixed martial arts.
The participating schools were: Aikido of San Jose, Cung Le's Universal Strength Headquarters, Doc-Fai Wong Martial Arts Center, Golden State Taekwondo, Great Grandmaster Ralph Castro's International Shaolin Kenpo Association, Hamilton Martial Arts Academy, Pallen's Martial Arts, Richard Branden's Studio Kicks, and West Coast Martial Arts.
The Raiders have long been pioneers, both on and off the field, with regards to the team's global outreach. The Silver and Black maintains a global presence and communicates with the worldwide Raider Nation through the team's official web sites which feature original and translated content in six different languages - Tagalog, Japanese, German, Chinese, Spanish and English.