March 19, 2019 at 5:52 pm EDT | by Mariah Cooper
Cherry Blossom time!
Cherry Blossoms, gay news, Washington Blade
(Photo by Nicolas Raymond via Wikimedia Commons)

The National Cherry Blossom Festival celebrates the bloom of the cherry blossom trees in the District with numerous events throughout the coming weeks. 

The festivities kick off with the Pink Tie Party, presented by All Nippon Airways, at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center (1300 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W.) on Friday, March 22 at 7 p.m. Guests will enjoy food catered by local restaurants such as Barley Mac, Cane and Columbia Firehouse and an open bar. There will also be dancing and a silent auction. Tickets are $225. 

The sold-out opening ceremony is at the Warner Theatre (513 13th St., N.W.) on Saturday, March 23 at 5 p.m. Performers will celebrate the anniversary of the gift of trees from Japan to the United States with both traditional and contemporary performances. Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon The Super Live, Ikuko Kawai, Yusaku Mochizuki and the 682 Quintet will all perform. 

The Blossom Kite Festival is at the Washington Monument (2 15th St., N.W.) on Saturday, March 30 from 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Kite makers and flyers will showcase their skills in competitions and demonstrations, Rokkaku Battles and the Hot Tricks Showdown. Attendees can bring their own kites or children can make kites at an activity station. Kites will also be available for purchase on-site. Admission is free. 

Petalpalooza is at The Wharf (690 Wharf St., S.W.) on Saturday, April 6 from noon-9:30 p.m. There will be live music on multiple outdoor stages, a beer garden and activities for all ages. A fireworks show closes out the day at 8:30 p.m. Free admission. 

The National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade runs along Constitution Avenue N.W. on Saturday, April 13 at 10 a.m. “black-ish” star Anthony Anderson will serve as grand marshal. Singer Cece Peniston, Motown star Freda Payne, “The Voice” contestant Rayshun LaMarr, “American Idol” contestant Michael Woodard, “America’s Got Talent” contestant Christina Wells, Miss America Nia Franklin and the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders will also make appearances. Grandstand seating is $20 but standing along the parade route is free. 

For more information on all National Cherry Blossom Festival events, visit nationalcherryblossomfestival.org.

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