Hundreds of Arizonans band together to help Japan

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By Alicia Barron By Alicia Barron

PHOENIX - A group of local restaurants and businesses helped raise more than $7,000 for relief efforts in Japan Wednesday night.

Roll in for Japan, held at the Madison Event Center in downtown Phoenix, offered tastes from some of the Valley's best restaurants for a suggested donation of $20 per person.

The event was the brainchild of Hana Japanese Eatery's Lori Hashimoto, whose grandmother, aunt, uncle and cousins live in Tokyo.

They were not hurt in the country's earthquake or tsunami, but Hashimoto said the impact of the disaster will be long lasting and she and other businesses wanted to help.

One hundred percent of all of the money raised will go to the American Red Cross Grand Canyon Chapter's disaster relief fund to aid recovery efforts in Japan.

Participating restaurants and businesses included Sens Asian Tapas, Citizen Public House, Barrio Cafe, Robeks, Liberty Market, Asahi Bakery among others.