If you enjoy Japanese culture in the San Francisco Bay area, check out the Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival in May. Along with the colorful parade, the annual event features a food bazaar with traditional Japanese fare, cooking demonstrations, a Japanese traditional arts and crafts fair, the Queen’s Program, booths, a children’s village, cultural performances, martial arts, live bands, and more.
Exhibits and demonstrations typically include ikebana (flower arranging), sumi-e (brush/ink painting), calligraphy, bonsai (tree dwarfing), origami, and doll-making. Entertainment stages will feature Japanese classical and folk dancers, martial artists, taiko drummers and others.
Each year, more than 200,000 people flood the streets of Japantown for this event. The Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival is said to be the second largest festival outside of Washington, D.C. to celebrate the blooming of cherry blossoms; and held at one of three remaining Japantowns in the United States.
WHAT: The Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival and Parade are free.
WHEN: Takes place every year in April. Follow the link above for the upcoming schedule and updates.
WHERE: The festival is in San Francisco’s Japantown (Post Street between Laguna and Fillmore Streets). The Grand Parade, begins at City Hall.