LONG BEACH - On April 17, it will be 35 years since Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge marched into Phnom Penh, Cambodia, and embarked on a genocidal reign that became known as the Killing Fields.
On Saturday, members of the Cambodian community will solemnly remember the anniversary. Some will do it privately with prayers and meditation. Others will gather at several events around town.
The Killing Fields Memorial Center, which has commemorated the date since 2005, is playing host to a daylong series of events at multiple sites and the United Cambodian Community will also recognize the date for the second time.
Although not all Cambodian groups attach particular significance to the April 17 date, for many it is a day of intense mourning for the upwards of 2 million victims of executions, starvation, disease and deprivation during the Khmer Rouge's 45-month reign.

Paline Soth, of the Killing Fields Memorial group, says the 35th anniversary as such doesn't hold particular significance.
"For us (every year) is still the same. For us, this generation of the Killing Fields, they still have the same pain and they still think of the loved ones lost and the tragedy. It never goes away."
In keeping with the tradition established in 2005, there will be a Killing Fields Buddhist requiem prayer at Wat Vipassanaram, 1239 E. 20th St. from 8:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m., which will be followed by lunch.
The Memorial group will stage

a slide show and documentary film at the Mark Twain Library, 1401 E. Anaheim St. between 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. The group's events close with an interfaith ceremony and candlelight vigil at the proposed future home of the Killing Fields Memorial Garden, 1501 E. Anaheim St. from 5 p.m. until dark.
UCC is moving its event this year. Last year, the group held its first commemoration as a fund-raising dinner at New Paradise Restaurant. Executive director Sarah Pol-Lim also invited members of the Jewish community, because of the history of suffering the two cultures share.
This year, UCC is moving its event to its own offices at 2201 E. Anaheim St. between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.
Among special guests to the event will be U.S. 29th District Congressman Adam Schiff, who represents the Pasadena Area.
Schiff, who has spoken forcefully on genocide issues in Congress, most notably about the Armenian genocide, will speak at about 2:30 p.m.
Members of the community will also be invited to tell their stories about the Killing Fields and the documentary film "New Year Baby" by Socheata Poeuv will be shown in the UCC offices.
Pol-Lim said she hopes community members will come forth and tell their stories and help continue to raise genocide awareness. There will also be Census information available because, according to Pol-Lim, that provides another avenue for people's voices to be heard.
All the events are open to the public and free.