Monday, March 30, 2009

The Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington DC

Thank you Klaus, Sandy, Ivar, Wren, Fishing Guy and Louise for hosting My World. You can visit by clicking on their icon below.

It won't be long before the start of The Cherry Blossom Festival. We missed it last year but hopefully for this one we will be able to get down there and see them in all their glory. I took the photo a few years ago when they weren't quite in full bloom. You can just make out the shape of the Jefferson Memorial in the background. The other two photos were taken in a different area when the cherry blossoms were a little further along.

The National Cherry Blossom Festival annually commemorates the 1912 gift of 3,000 cherry trees from Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo to the city of Washington, honoring the lasting friendship between the United States and Japan and celebrating the continued close relationship between our two cultures.

In a simple ceremony on March 27, 1912, First Lady Helen Herron Taft and Viscountess Chinda, wife of the Japanese ambassador, planted the first two trees from Japan on the north bank of the Tidal Basin in West Potomac Park. In 1915, the United States Government reciprocated with a gift of flowering dogwood trees to the people of Japan. A group of American school children reenacted the initial planting in 1927 and the first "festival” was held in 1935, sponsored by civic groups in the Nation’s Capital.

First Lady Lady Bird Johnson accepted 3,800 more trees in 1965. In 1981, the cycle of giving came full circle. Japanese horticulturists were given cuttings from our trees to replace some cherry trees in Japan which had been destroyed in a flood.

The Festival was expanded to two weeks in 1994 to accommodate a diverse activity schedule during the trees’ blooming. Today, more than a million people visit Washington, DC each year to admire the blossoming cherry trees and attend events that herald the beginning of spring in the Nation’s Capital.

The Festival looks forward to celebrating the centennial anniversary of the gift of trees in 2012 and is planning spectacular events to mark this historic and special occasion.

30 comments:

Lily Hydrangea said...

what a great idea to go visit. I enjoy my own little blossom fest in my backyard as I watch our cherry tree bloom each spring. I would love to see the one in DC though. Happy Spring!

Today's Blah... said...

What great blossoms and I would so love to visit too and be immersed in the beauty of this all.

SweetPeaSurry said...

Oh I do love Cherry trees in bloom. They're just so utterly female.

blessings!

diane said...

How beautiful! You are lucky to experience Cherry Blossoms. We don't have then in Brisbane and I can't remember ever seeing any...boo hoo.

T and S said...

Nice little piece of history and beautiful image to go along. The 2nd image is my favorite in this one.

Kay said...

I would love to see those cherry blossoms some day. I love your photos. It must really be a magical feeling to see all the trees in bloom.

Day4plus said...

Aren't those trees so beautiful. We have many cherry trees at our state capital (Olympis, Washington) too. MBthomin

tricia said...

Just gorgeous. Your pictures are always so wonderful. It must smell heavenly there.

antigoni said...

Beautiful trees! Your photos are amazing. I hope you enjoy the festival.

J said...

Gorgeous, I love cherry blossom and I'm delighted that it's started to bloom here in China.

Arija said...

An interesting post with beautiful bossoms.

GreensboroDailyPhoto said...

Loving your world but COVETING that poached pear!

Cezar and Léia said...

So nice that you will go! I would love to see it there!
I want to see more pictures okay!
Beautiful post!
Léia

Roy said...

Cherry Blossom is such a lovely flower Denise. Hope the wind doesn't come along too soon.

Tina said...

thats beautiful. reminds me of the blosson trees on the way to school lol

ayamlin said...

Hello!
thank you for your kind comment on my blog!
by the way thank you for beautiful Japanese cherry blossoms!
I'm more than delighted to see cherry blossoms in Washinton.
I wanna go and see them someday.
Has Obama seen them already?:)

Erin said...

loved all your photographs and commentary. one of these days i will have to revisit d.c. when this is going on.
have a wonderful day.

ewok1993 said...

that is a beautiful sight. i've always wanted to go to dc in time for the blooms, maybe some day.

MedaM said...

Your post is great and your photos are just wonderful. It hasn’t started to bloom yet in my city and I am looking forward to it. It seems to me that there is nothing more beautiful than the trees in bloom.

Connie said...

I bet that would be so pretty to see. My cherry tree is getting lots of flower buds. It grows out pink and looks like a carnation when it opens. I can't wait to take pictures.

Gill - That British Woman said...

I love Cherry Blossoms, they won't be in full bloom here until the middle to end of May, that's how far behind we are in our Spring weather,

Gill in Canada

allhorsestuff said...

Oh thanks so much for the early preview...we have them on our street and they are just begining to bud now.

Jeannette St.G. said...

I love cherry blossoms!
A few years ago, we drove by several vineyards (right wording?) with cherry trees in bloom. S
o I took as many pics as I could and made a small pastel displaying them (post is called "the Mystery of Spring" last year).
Wish I could go with you!

sunnymama said...

Beautiful blossoms, what an exquisite place!

Brit' Gal Sarah said...

What a wonderful event to have going on close to you, these pictures are stunning.

Marites said...

I would love to see those blossoms for real. They look so beautiful and dainty, I can't help but be so amazed.

W. Latane Barton said...

The only time I've been in D. C. for cherry blossom time was when I was passing through on Amtrak (train). Beautiful trees.

Denise said...

Wow, you've all left such lovely comments. Thank you for making my day.

George said...

Thanks for the beautiful pictures. We were in Washington in April, 2006, and saw some of the trees in bloom. Absolutely beautiful.

Leedra said...

The cherry blossoms are gorgeous.

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