The National Cherry Blossom Festival begins on March 20 and runs through April 27, 2012. Peak blooms are expected to be March 20-23 this year. The event commemorates the 1912 gift from Tokyo Mayor Yukio Ozaki, every year the trees turn the tidal basin into a cloud of pink. It's truly breathtaking when the blooms are at their peak. Over 1 million people visit Washington, DC to see the trees in bloom and take part in the events the festival offers.
The Cherry Blossom Festival Parade will take place on April 14, 2012 and is a wonderful family oriented event. The parade features floats, helium balloons, marching bands and entertainment. It runs from 10:30am to 12:30pm. Standing room along the parade route is free. Grandstand seating tickets are $20.00. Arrive early for standing room, it fills up fast. The parade runs along Constitution Avenue from 7th to 17th streets.