Beginning on March 20th, the nation’s greatest springtime celebration comes into full bloom with the 2016 National Cherry Blossom Festival. The annual event celebrates the thousands of cherry trees blooming throughout the city, kicking off with the opening ceremony on March 26th. The trees, frosted with pink blooms, commemorate the symbolic relationship between the capitol of Japan and the United States. The National Cherry Blossom Festival continues until Sunday, April 17, and includes abundant events and opportunities to celebrate and view the stunning cherry blossoms.
SIGNATURE CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL EVENTS
National Cherry Blossom Festival Opening Ceremony – Saturday, March 26 at the historic Warner Theatre, 513 13th Street NW
Welcome springtime to the nation’s capital as you celebrate the anniversary of the gift of symbolic birth and renewal from Japan to the United States. Enjoy live entertainment from world-renowned performers, including Brenna Whitaker, Asako Tamura, and the 6821 Quintet.
Blossom Kite Festival – Saturday, April 2 at the grounds of Washington Monument, near 17th Street NW and Constitution Avenue
The sixth annual Blossom Kite Festival soars with the creativity and skill of kite makers and flyers as a showcase flies above Washington, D.C. Events within the Kite Festival include the “kites of the decades” demonstration, Rokkaku Battles, and the Hot Tricks Showdown. Although the skills of experts are in the spotlight, all are welcome to bring their own kites to fly on the Public Field, and children can make kites at nearby locations.
Southwest Waterfront Fireworks Festival – Saturday, April 9 at Southwest Waterfront, 600 Water Street
Presented by Harris Teeter, the Southwest Waterfront offers more than eight hours of music, water-related fun, cultural activities, and other live entertainment, including the phenomenal annual fireworks show!
National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade® – Saturday, April 16 on Constitution Avenue, from 7th to 17th Streets NW
Witness the striking magnitude and magnificence of the United States capitol’s largest spectator event. The parade runs for ten blocks along historic Constitution Avenue, featuring giant helium-filled balloons, elaborate floats, celebrity entertainers, and marching bands from across the country.
Sakura Matsuri – Japanese Street Festival – Saturday, April 16 – M Street and New Jersey Avenue SE, across the street from the Navy Yard-Ballpark Metro station
The Sakura Matsuri celebrates Japanese culture as the largest daylong celebration in the United States, welcoming more than 80 cultural groups, arts vendors, and food booths.
CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL HOTEL ACCOMMODATIONS
The National Cherry Blossom Festival draws travelers from around the world. Washington, D.C. area hotels recommend booking your Cherry Blossom Festival accommodations early because availability typically becomes limited throughout the festival. The American Inn of Bethesda offers family-friendly accommodations only four short blocks from the Bethesda metro station, which is a direct ride to downtown Washington, D.C., on the Red Line. Book the D.C. Metro package and your train tickets are included. Click here to check availability for Cherry Blossom Festival hotel accommodations.