This Sunday, April 14, the Subaru Cherry Blossom Festival presents its marquee event, Sakura Sunday. (Photo courtesy Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia)
Cross your fingers for sunshine and pack up a picnic basket this Sunday, April 14.
The centerpiece of 2013 Subaru Cherry Blossom Festival comes to Fairmount Park for an action-packed day under the blossoms.
Celebrating the near forest of sakura (flowering Japanese cherry trees) in historic Fairmount Park, most of which were first planted in 1926 as a gift from the people of Japan, the festival honors Philadelphia’s traditional and contemporary Japanese cultural connections.
Sakura Sunday events get started with the Cherry Blossom 5K at 7 a.m. before launching into a day-long Japanese-culture extravaganza — all against the backdrop of blooming Japanese cherry trees at the Fairmount Park Horticulture Center.
Opening ceremonies are slated to get underway at 10:30 a.m., and will give way to a full schedule of activities.
On the main stage, Japan’s Tamagawa Taiko Drum & Dance group will perform traditional and original Japanese works featuring powerful choreography and vibrant costumes. Shows are set for both 11:15 a.m. and 3:15 p.m.
Throughout the day, tours of Shofuso Japanese House & Garden will be available, as well. Timed, ticketed tours will be available every 10 minutes for an additional $5.
Family-friendly activities will range from martial arts demonstrations to origami, calligraphy and tea ceremony workshops, as well as a performance by J-pop band Magverry, who will be making a stop at the festival on the band’s first American tour.
Plus, don’t miss the Prettiest Pet in Pink contest for cats and dogs, along with the Harajuku Fashion Show, which will feature colorful designs from local students inspired by Tokyo’s bustling Harajuku district.
For a full list of activities, click here.
Shuttle bus service from Center City will run continuously on Sunday from in front of the Union League (Broad and Sansom streets) beginning at 10 a.m. A $10 roundtrip fee plus festival admission will be charged at the bus stop. Return shuttles depart from the bridge by Shofuso Japanese House & Garden with final shuttles departing at 4:30 p.m.
Tickets, available onsite, run $5 for adults and children 14 and under are free. Pre-sale tickets are not available, and admission is cash only.
2013 Sakura Sunday
When: April 14, 10:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
Where: Fairmount Park Horticulture Center, Montgomery Drive and Belmont Avenue
Cost: Adults $5; Children ages 14 and under free
More info: www.subarucherryblossom.org
For a festival map, see below.