Cherry Blossom Festival in DC Celebrates 105-Year Friendship of US and Japan

Last updated: June 2, 2017 

It’s the time of a year again when the cherry blossoms lining Washington DC’s Tidal Basin burst into pink color and mesmerize spectators from around the world. To celebrate the arrival of spring, the National Cherry Blossom Festival takes place from March 15 to April 16, 2017 with many cultural events and the main parade in the DC area.

Each year, the month-long festival commemorates the 1912 gift of 3,000 cherry trees from Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo to the city of Washington, DC. The gift and annual celebration honor the lasting friendship between the United States and Japan and the continued close relationship between the two countries.

Here is the calendar of the festival:

March 16 (Thur) 7 – 11 pm

Pink Tie Party (fundraiser) Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center

March 18 (Sat) – April 2 (Sun) 10 am – 6 pm

Welcome Area and ANA Performance Stage (daily) Tidal Basin Paddle Boats

March 25 (Sat) 5 pm – 6:30 pm

Opening Ceremony Warner Theatre

April 1 (Sat) 10 am – 4:30 pm

Blossom Kite Festival Washington Monument grounds

April 2 (Sun) 7:30 am – 11 am

Ten Mile Run and 5K Run-Walk Washington Monument grounds

April 8 (Sat) 10 am – noon

National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade Constitution Avenue

April 8 (Sat) 10:30 am – 6 pm

Sakura Matsuri – Japanese Street Festival M Street and New Jersey Avenue, SE in the Capitol Riverfront neighborhood

April 14 (Sat) 7 pm – 11 pm

Events DC Cherry Blast!
(food tasting & performance)
Dock 5 at Union Market, 1309 5th Street NE, Washington DC

April 15 (Sat) 2 pm – 9:30 pm

Southwest Waterfront Firework Festival District Wharf / Titanic Memorial

The Events DC Cherry Blast will feature food tastings prepared by six acclaimed DC chefs:

  • Yakitori (skewered chicken) & ramen noodles by Chef Erik Bruner-Yang (Spoken English, Maketto, Paper Horse)
  • Karage (fried chicken) by Chef Katsuya Fukushima (Bantam King, Daikaya, Haikan)
  • Dorayaki (red bean pancake) by Chef Tim Ma (Kyirisan)
  • Kushikatsu (deep fried meat & vegetables) by Chef Seng Luangrath (Thip Khao, Bangkok Golden)
  • Okonomiyaki (savory pancake) by Chef Hiro Mitsui (Conbini Café)
  • Curry Rice by Chef Huy Nguyen (Pho Wheelz, Balo Kitchen)

Japanese alcoholic beverages such as Hibiki Whisky, Suntory Whisky Toki, Kirin beer and sake can be sampled in the night market.

Make sure to check the official website as well as the festival’s Facebook Page for tickets and detail of each event.

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