Bay Area/ San Francisco/ Fun & Entertainment
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Published on April 10, 2023
Cherry Blossom Festival blooms big again in JapantownImage: Joe Kukura, Hoodline

SF’s annual Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival, the second-largest cherry blossom festival in the nation behind Washington, D.C.’s, did return last year. But it was a scaled-down version without its hallmark event, the Grand Parade. That parade is back this year, as are all the usual festivities, as the 56th annual Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival returned this past Saturday, and continues this coming Saturday and Sunday, April 15-16.

Image: Joe Kukura, Hoodline

 

Post Street was packed with vendor booths with traditional Japanese apparel, jewelry, anime collectibles, and other celebrations of Japanese culture. While the Hello Kitty truck was not there this weekend, there was certainly Hello Kitty merchandise galore available at the vending booths.


Image: Joe Kukura, Hoodline

 

And you will absolutely see shiba inus at the Cherry Blossom Festival. Several akita enthusiasts also had booths with plenty of the pups running around.

Image: Joe Kukura, Hoodline

The performances scheduled for this coming weekend include ukulele bands, karaoke, and of course Japanese drumming. This weekend will also feature a bonsai exhibit, calligraphy lessons, and a sword exhibition.

Image: Joe Kukura, Hoodline

 

Sunday’s Cherry Blossom Festival Grand Parade is at 1 p.m. PT, beginning at Civic Center Plaza, heading north on Polk Street, then taking a left on Post Street, and continuing to Japantown Peace Plaza. And be aware that the annual cosplay show is Sunday, April 16 at 4:15 p.m.