National Cherry Blossom Festival wraps up this weekend with an all-day party

This is the last weekend for the National Cherry Blossom Festival, and there’s a lot going on in D.C. to celebrate. (Courtesy National Cherry Blossom Festival)

Sure, maybe the pink blossoming cherry trees around the D.C. area have turned to green, but that doesn’t mean we can’t still celebrate them.

This is the last weekend for the National Cherry Blossom Festival, and there’s a lot going on at Capitol Riverfront at The Yards to celebrate.

The big bash is Saturday at Petalpalooza.

“It’s an all-day event from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. with three stages of music, art fun, and lots of Instagrammable moments to enjoy, and it culminates with fireworks at 8:30 p.m.,” said Diana Mayhew, president and CEO of the National Cherry Blossom Festival.

The art fun includes an art walk — but not a traditional one where you’re limited to looking.

“One of our cherry blossom sculptures is going to be blank,” Mayhew said. “Our artist, Lea Craigie Marshall, has created a paint-by-numbers actual sculpture and kids, adults — anybody — can join us by painting in that sculpture altogether to have a community artwork at the end of the day.”

More of a writer than a painter? There’s a poem tree where you’re invited to add your haiku to the foliage.

And there are exhibits meant just for playing and fantastic photo moments.

“We have these outfits that are made by another artist that you can actually stand behind and take pictures, and this major artwork of a swing. You can actually sit there and it’s a great place to take pictures,” said Mayhew.

The organizers know many people are still concerned about social distancing, so they are recommending making a picnic event out of the day, so you can space yourself out to be comfortable. If you really don’t want to carry your food in, many of the area restaurants are creating grab-and-go meals that will let you keep your space.

The festival is a family-friendly event, and not just for the two-legged members of the family. There are periodic comfort stations for pets, too — you just may want to take them home before the fireworks.

Speaking of the fireworks, Mayhew said they’ll be visible from a pretty wide area starting at 8:30 p.m.

“You can see fireworks all the way from the boardwalk, around the Capitol Riverfront Business Improvement District,” said Mayhew, ”But you could also see them at Anacostia Park. They’ll be shot off from the water right by Yards Park.”

See the full schedule online.

Michelle Murillo

Michelle Murillo has been a part of the WTOP family since 2014. She started her career in Central Florida before working in radio in New York City and Philadelphia.

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