MEDINA — They came for a martial arts tournament in Akron, but visited Medina on Thursday armed with gifts.
In City Hall’s rotunda, Mayor Dennis Hanwell welcomed four martial artists from China’s Hebei Province and presented each with a city pin and magazine and a proclamation.
The four, who will participate in the International Warrior Hall of Fame Open this weekend, gave Hanwell a sword, a red tea gift pack and an instructional DVD on martial arts.
Hanwell said he was grateful for the gifts and the quartet’s interest in the city.
“It’s an honor to have them here. It’s humbling as a city that we can show our guests how great it is to live here,” he said. “We are very proud to host them and are glad that they were here.”
Grandmaster Jia Zhongman, grandmaster Wang Dayong, grandmaster Wang Jinwu and master Qi Lutian will participate Saturday as respected guests and demonstrators at the tournament, said Jeff Burlingame of Asian Martial Arts in Medina Township.
The tournament, he said, is an annual event.
“Each year Asian Martial Arts of Medina and grandmaster Tony Yung of the WuTang Kung Fu School in Akron request various high-ranking martial artists from China to come to our tournament,” he said.
After the meeting at City Hall, Brad Root of A.I. Root took the group to his candle-making facility for a private tour.
The International Warrior Hall of Fame Open will be at the Shaw Jewish Center, 750 White Pond Road, Akron. Doors open at 9 a.m. and the masters demonstration will be 10 to 11 a.m.
Contact Dani Orr at (330) 721-4049 or firstname.lastname@example.org.