Sakura Sunday is the grand finale of the week-long Subaru Cherry Blossom Festival in Philadelphia presented by the Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia (JASGP). Over 12,000 people attended the festival in Fairmount Park this year to enjoy performing arts, music, food, natural beauty and industry of Japan under a blanket of cherry blossom trees.
Highlights from the day included;
- Matsuri Village, a family activity and demonstration area featuring face painting, fortune telling, sand art and other activities as well as performances from the Japanese Language School’s Kids choir, martial arts demos, and more.
- 3rd annual Subaru Sushi Samurai of the Year Competition, facilitated by Philadelphia’s Queen of Sushi, Madame Saito, participants will have the opportunity to construct sushi creations based on a theme. The contestant with the most artistic sushi masterpiece will be named “Sushi Samurai of the Year” at an on-stage presentation.
- Prettiest Pet in Pink Parade provides guests with an overload of furry adorableness. Sakura Sunday attendees can enter their dogs, all dressed in pink, in this parade. The whole day is pet-friendly; everyone is welcome to bring their four-legged friends on leads and leashes.
- Harajuku Fashion Show — Named for Tokyo’s trendiest neighborhood, the Harajuku Fashion show features designs inspired by fashion-forward trend-setting hub.
- Cosplay Fashion Show features the amazing recreations of popular characters from manga (Japanese comic books), anime, and video games. Little Akiba Anime and Cosplay Area is inspired by the trends of Akihabara, Tokyo’s center for all things otaku (ardent, passionate fan).
- Karaoke and traditional Japanese music will fill the festival air with delightful music.
- Origami, calligraphy and other traditional Japanese arts and craft projects offer opportunities for everyone to gain experience with the creative arts of Japan.
- Demonstrations of Japanese martial arts offer exciting displays of physical power and grace.
- Shofuso Japanese House and Garden tours are available all day during Sakura Sunday. An additional entry fee is charged for these tours.
About the 2016 Subaru Cherry Blossom Festival of Greater Philadelphia:
The Subaru Cherry Blossom Festival is a project of the Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia (JASGP) created with tremendous support from Subaru of America, Inc. as the title sponsor. The project aims to foster a better understanding of the cultural, social, and educational customs of Japan building on the JASGP commitment to plant and maintain cherry trees in local parks. To date, JASGP has planted more than 1,000 cherry trees, supplementing the 1,600 flowering trees presented by the Japanese government as a gesture of friendship in 1926. Upon completion of its 1,000-tree pledge in 2007, the JASGP shifted its focus to plantings in community and neighborhood parks to help green and beautify urban communities. Since 2008, cherry trees have been planted in Clark Park, Franklin Square, and Morris Park.