Accessibility links

Breaking News

Thousands Celebrate Washington DC's Cherry Blossom Festival

Thousands of people gathered in Washington D.C. Saturday to mark a 1912 gift by Tokyo's mayor promoting friendship between the United States and Japan.

Marching bands and dancing groups paraded down one of the main avenues of the U.S. capital as part of the annual Cherry Blossom Festival.

The festival commemorates Tokyo's gift of thousands of cherry trees, which bloom once each year around many of the significant monuments of the nation's capital, including the Jefferson memorial just south of the White House.

Although many Americans wanted the trees removed following the 1941 Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor, the blooming trees and the Cherry Blossom Festival remain one of Washington's most famous events, drawing tens of thousands of tourists.