First held in 1966, Washington DC's Sakura Matsuri festival is a huge celebration of Japan's distinctive culture. Martial arts demonstrations, food stalls and Taiko drummers rub shoulders with origami, calligraphy and traditional storytelling along Pennsylvania Avenue.
The Sakura Matsuri - Japanese Street Festival celebrates the relationship between the US and Japan each spring, just as the cherry trees that were a gift from Japan to the city in 1912 come into blossom.
If you're hungry, the Taste of Japan offers everything from sushi to Japanese candy. The Ginza Arcade recreates Japanese shopping in the heart of Washington and presents an array of goods including antiques, kimono and Japanese kokeshi dolls.
With an annual attendance of around 80,000, the event is now one of the most popular fixtures on Washington's calendar.
The Sakura Matsuri - Japanese Street Festival stretches for six blocks through downtown DC on Pennsylvania Avenue from 9th to 14th Streets NW (from FBI headquarters to near the White House grounds). See website for details.
The best way to get to Sakura Matsuri (and the Parade) is to take the Metro. The Federal Triangle station exits next to two Festival entrances, and the Metro Center, Archives-Navy Memorial, and Smithsonian stations are a short walk away.
Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
For more information contact:
Japan-America Society of Washington DC