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On Saturday, September 27,2014 the sixth annual Kyu Fest was hosted at Charlotte Catholic High School on Saturday the 27th of September by United Southern Isshinryu Karate (USIK) of Charlotte NC. Following a Black Belt Meeting and photos sessions, and introduction of VIPs.  The tournament begins promptly at 1100 (11 AM). Past events featured over 160 competitors competing in 63 divisions, including Kumite (free fighting), Empty Hand Kata (forms) and Weapons Kata (forms). Additionally, over  250 spectators (mostly direct family members) were in attendance.  The event ended promptly at 1400 (2 PM), followed by lunch.

Since 2009, this event has grown steadily and served as a means not only to support a unique venue for a kyu ranks (under black belt) tournament, but also an educational atmosphere in which to train and develop newly promoted black belts, as well as instructor and mid-level black belts in the nuances of logistics, judging, and operating a safe and efficient tournament.





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Winthrop Isshin Ryu Academy

 



Master Jim Longwith (6th Dan)

Location/date of birth: Cookeville, Tennessee in 1960.

Date/Location/Instructor where Isshinryu training began: 1978 at Cleveland State Community College in Cleveland, Tennessee with Master J.C. Burris.

Date received Sho-Dan in Isshinryu karate: February 1985.

Date received present rank: Roku-Dan in August 2013.

Organizational support: Member of the IIKA since 1990 and AOKA since 1998.

Awards (Martial Arts): Nominated to the York County Sports Hall of Fame in 1999.

Profession: Plant Engineer and Production Manager.

Education: B.S. Mechanical Engineering from University of Tennessee-Chattanooga (1984).

Personal: Wife: Donna.

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Sensei Kathy Covington (4th Dan)

Location/date of birth: Greenwood, Mississippi on January 27, 1960.

Date/Location/Instructor where Isshinryu training began: 1984 at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC with Sensei Jim Longwith.

Date received Sho-Dan in Isshinryu karate: June 1990.

Date received present rank: San-Dan in December 2000.

Organizational support: Member of the IIKA since 1990 and AOKA since 1998.

Awards (Martial Arts): Received AOKA Outstanding Female Instructor of the Year (2003).

Profession: Therapeutic Recreation, Rock Hill Parks, Recreation and Tourism Department.

Education: B.S. Education from Winthrop University (1982).

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Mr. Frank Stewart (3rd Dan)

Location/date of birth: Rock Hill, SC on April 21, 1953.

Date/Location/Instructor where Isshinryu training began: 1985 at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC with Sensei Jim Longwith.

Date received Sho-Dan in Isshinryu karate: August 28, 1997.

Date received present rank: Ni-Dan in December 8, 2000.

Organizational support: Member of the IIKA since 1990 and AOKA since 1998.

Profession: Science Teacher.

Education: M.A. Science Teaching from Winthrop University (1985); B.S. Biology from University of South Carolina (1975).

Personal: Wife: Lynda. Children: Jeff, David, Lindsay.

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Steve Wise

Sensei Steve Wise (3rd Dan)

Location/date of birth: West Palm Beach, Florida on September 3, 1961

Date/Location/Instructor where Isshinryu training began: 2000 at

Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC with Sensei Jim Longwith

Date received present rank: San-Dan in August 2013.

Organizational support: Member of the IIKA since 2004 and AOKA 2007

Profession: Maintenance Supervisor

Education: Trevecca Nazarene University (1981) and York Technical College (2000)

Personal: Wife: Shelia; Children: Amber and Stephanie

 

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