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Adding tatami seating at Naval Air Facility Atsugi’s Fleet Galley not only will accommodate more diners but also give them a taste of Japanese culture.

The seating includes a raised platform padded with tatami mats and accommodates four tables. The ozashiki-style elevated seating allows the patrons to sit on the rice-straw mat flooring with their feet in a foot well under the tables.

Senior Chief Petty Officer Brian Ware, the food service officer at the galley, said he got the idea after eating off base and thought it would be a nice addition to the air facility eatery.

“We want to get sailors out of the fast food mentality and give them an enjoyable experience on base,” Ware said of the $18,000 project.

After winning a seventh consecutive five-star rating for dining, Atsugi’s Fleet Galley was looking to continue its standard of quality, Ware said.

Kenichi Nishizawa, known as Ken-san throughout the galley, put together a plan for the room.

Ware said the galley plans to hold a Mongolian barbecue Tuesday and Thursday evenings, serving 20 military members on Tuesdays and 20 Department of Defense civilians on Thursdays.

The new seating area is to open for service Monday. The Fleet Galley serves DOD card holders and their guests and is open every day of the week. For more information, call the galley at DSN 264-4543.

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