This year's National Cherry Blossom Festival will be in full bloom, hosting a variety of fully in-person events for the first time since the pandemic started.
The festival, which had been virtual over the last two years, is being held in-person this year.
When Is Peak Bloom for the Cherry Blossoms?
The cherry blooms reached peak bloom March 21. Peak bloom is defined as when about 70% of the Yoshino cherry trees along the Tidal Basin flower at the same time.
Cherry Tree Varieties, by Bloom
Source: Getty Images, Flicker
Credit: Anisa Holmes / NBC Washington
When Is the National Cherry Blossom Festival?
The festival is running now through April 17, serving up multiple events throughout the District.
Organizers have also included COVID-conscious events such as the Petal Porches program, when D.C. residents are encouraged to decorate their homes. This year's program also includes a decoration competition. Those interested in participating can register for free on the festival's website.
The Pink Tie Party will require attendees to wear face masks and show proof of vaccination against COVID-19, as did the opening ceremony.
If you don't want to miss this year's festivities, here's a breakdown of the festival's most popular upcoming events.
What (and When) Are the Cherry Blossom Festival's Key Events?
The Cherry Blossom Festival includes multiple events both inside and outdoors, from performances to a parade to street festivals. Read on for some of the highlights, but you can find the complete calendar on the festival's website.
PIXELBLOOM: Now through June 5
ARTECHOUSE DC's upcoming exhibition PIXELBLOOM, which opened March 12, allows visitors to immerse themselves in a 22-minute audiovisual experience that aims to "breathe a new life into cherry blossoms in peak bloom through an explosion of vibrant colors and textures," according to planners.
The exhibition is open to people of all ages through June 5 (editor's note: ARTECHOUSE originally listed the end date as May 30) . Tickets ($16-$25) are available online.
The National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade: April 9
This year's parade will run for 10 blocks along Constitution Avenue on April 9 from 10 a.m. to noon. Some portions of the parade will be free but are on a first-come, first-serve basis. Tickets are currently available for reserved grandstand seating near the performance areas, according to the festival's website.
Sakura Matsuri Japanese Street Festival: April 9-10
This year's Sakura Matsuri Japanese Street Festival will be held over two days for the first time in its 60-year history, the festival's website said.
The festival, which celebrates Japanese culture in the United States, will be held on April 9 and 10 along Pennsylvania Avenue, featuring exhibits and activities such as the Beyond Tokyo Pavilion, Ginza Marketplace, a cosplay contest and sake testing, as well as more than 20 Japanese food vendors.
Tickets are available now and priced at $10 for a one-day pass and $15 for a two-day pass. The festival also offers special ticket packages for families with young children.
Anacostia River Festival: April 10
The Anacostia River Festival will feature a variety of music performances, including go-go music and local drum lines, on April 10. The free festival aims to honor the "history and sounds of communities on both sides of the Anacostia River and amplifying the stories, culture, and heritage of neighboring African American residents." The concerts will also be available via livestream on 11th Street Bridge Park’s social media platforms. Visitors can also enjoy water-based activities such as canoeing and fishing. To register, visit the Bridge Park's website here.
Petalpalooza: April 16
Petalpalooza, taking place at the D.C. Wharf, offers a full day of live music on multiple stages and engaging activities for the whole family to enjoy. The free event is open to people of all ages and will include interactive art installations, a beer garden and family-friendly activities. The event will end with a fireworks show.
To learn more about other events and registration, visit the festival's website here.
Where Are the Cherry Blossoms in D.C.?
The cherry blossoms are located at D.C.'s Tidal Basin near the Jefferson Memorial, as well as around the National Mall ... and, actually, all over the District — see our interactive map below:
All the Neighborhood Cherry Blossom Trees in the District
Cherry trees on non-federal land in D.C., color-coded by type of tree and sized according to the tree's diameter. Click on the magnifying glass at the bottom of the map to search for your address.
Source: D.C. Department of Transportation (DDOT) Street Spatial Database (SSD)
Credit: Anisa Holmes / NBC Washington
How Do I Get to the Cherry Blossoms?
You have plenty of transportation options to choose from if you're trying to get to the Tidal Basin or National Mall.
Metro is running extra trains on weekends and is holding off on track work to accommodate crowds for cherry blossom season, the transit agency said.
Trains are operating at weekday service levels every weekend through April 16-17. Trains run every 10 minutes on the Red Line and every 20 minutes on all other lines. Downtown, trains are arriving every 6 to 10 minutes.
If you want to get to the Tidal Basin, the Smithsonian station is closest. Other nearby options include Federal Triangle, Archives-Navy Memorial and L'Enfant Plaza.
D.C.'s Circulator bus has a National Mall route, which includes a stop at the Jefferson Memorial. It also stops at Union Station, if you need access to a Metro station.
Want a short-term bike rental? Capital Bikeshare has multiple docking stations around the Tidal Basin and monuments.
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