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ABOUT THE FESTIVAL

NATIONAL CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL

WELCOME TO THE NATION’S GREATEST SPRINGTIME CELEBRATION!

The National Cherry Blossom Festival commemorates the 1912 gift of 3,000 cherry trees from Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo to the city of Washington, DC, and celebrates the enduring friendship between the people of the United States and Japan. Today’s Festival now spans four weeks and welcomes more than 1.5 million people to enjoy diverse and creative programming promoting traditional and contemporary arts and culture, natural beauty, and community spirit. Events are primarily free and open to the public.

HIGHLIGHTS

2021 Highlights

See why today’s National Cherry Blossom Festival has grown from modest beginnings to one of the world’s greatest celebrations of spring. Explore the rich history of the Festival with highlights from past festivals and our many special events.

Get an inside look at the 2021 Festival Events that happened in person and at home!

Learn what you might not know about the National Cherry Blossom Festival with these fun facts!

2022 OFFICIAL FESTIVAL ARTIST

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Photo credits: Stephanie Williams Images

ABOUT THE 2022 OFFICIAL ARTIST: LEA CRAIGIE-MARSHALL

Born in Falls Church, VA in 1976, Lea showed talent from an early age. A born artist, she spent her childhood taking various art classes with her artist grandmother in the mountains of West Virginia. Lea also found inspiration at home in her mother, also an artist. These strong female influences, as well as visiting her beloved first hometown of Washington, DC on weekends served as powerful forces to mold Lea into the dynamic and compelling artist she is today. Lea is a multidisciplinary, contemporary artist working with various mediums and techniques. Lea was first connected with the National Cherry Blossom Festival as one of 25 artists selected to paint a 2021 Art in Bloom Giant Cherry Blossom Sculpture titled “Crane’s Dance” which now permanently resides at Ward Memorial African Methodist Episcopal Church in Ward 7. Lea prides herself on not only using various mediums and techniques but mastering each one. Whether it is through a political/social activism piece, a beautiful landscape, a large-scale mural, or a portrait of one of her favorite artists Frida Kahlo, she hopes to evoke a deep connection within the viewer.

Festival Art Merchandise

Shop 2022 Official Art Merchandise!

SmarTrip Card

Starting March 18th, Navy Yard and L’Enfant Metro stations will offer special edition Cherry Blossom SmarTrip cards designed by Lea Craigie-Marshall for a limited time.

110th anniversary Logo

History of the Cherry Blossom Trees and Festival

1912: 3,000 CHERRY TREES GIFTED

More than 3,000 trees arrived in Washington in 1912 after coordination between the governments of the two countries, Dr. Jokichi Takamine, a world-famous chemist and the founder of Sankyo Co., Ltd. (today known as Daiichi Sankyo), Dr. David Fairchild of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Eliza Scidmore, first female board member of the National Geographic Society, and First Lady Helen Herron Taft.

MARCH 1912: FIRST TREES PLANTED
1912 – PRESENT: FIRST LADIES INVOLVED
1915: UNITED STATES RECIPROCATES
1927 – 1935: SCHOOLS & CIVIC GROUPS EXPAND FESTIVITIES
1981: JAPAN GIVEN CUTTINGS FOLLOWING FLOOD
1994 – 2012: FESTIVAL EXPANDS PROGRAMMING
TODAY AND BEYOND

SERVICE PROVIDERS

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             As a CPA firm serving the non-profit community, Rubino partners with the festival to tell its financial story and demonstrate the value and credibility of its financial statements.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             A full-service communications and marketing agency, with expertise in media relations and stakeholder engagement, Meraki partners with the Festival to artfully shape and amplify its stories through an inclusive lens.

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