The Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival is honored to announce Rick and Bobby Okamura as our 2024 Community Parade Marshals. There will be opportunities to see the Benkyodo brothers in the Grand Parade on Sunday, April 21, 2024.

Bobby (left) and Rick Okamura

Rick and Bobby Okamura of Benkyodo Company treated generations of our community and customers to ‘Confections that win Affections.’ Benkyodo was one of the original businesses in San Francisco Japantown when it opened in 1906 by their grandfather, Suyeichi Okamura. The founder immigrated from Kagoshima, Japan, and the manju shop continued as a family-run business for 116 years, becoming an Icon of Nihonmachi (San Francisco’s Japantown).

In 1951, the second generation of the Okamura’s, Hirofumi, took over the business, followed by Rick and Bobby in 1990. Rick and Bobby continued the Benkyodo Legacy, working and operating the Shop for 30 years, making by hand traditional and non-traditional delicious Mochi Manju and Anpan, over 800 to 1,000 pieces a day. 

Benkyodo was the center of the community until March 2022, when Rick and Bobby decided on their retirement. We collectively convey our gratitude and love for their delicious creations and decades of dedication to their art form.

Benkyodo store front