Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival

Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival
The Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival (VCBF) is an annual celebration dedicated to the awakening of spring and the reawakening of the local community. It is held in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada every spring, attracting thousands of people who come to the city to appreciate the beauty of Vancouver’s cherry blossoms.

Many streets in Vancouver are lined with around 40,000 Japanese cherry trees, of which many have been donated from the 1930s onward by the government of Japan. They bloom for several weeks in spring each year. The Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival was created to commemorate the cherry trees given by Japan to the City of Vancouver and to celebrate their beauty.

The festival was founded in 2005 by Linda Pole. Having lived abroad for more than a decade, she missed Vancouver’s cherry trews in bloom. Inspired by a Japanese diplomat who told her about cherry blossom festivals in Japan, she decided to create a similar celebration in Vancouver. The first festival took place in 2006.

The program of the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival includes a wide range of seasonal, cherry-themed events such as viewing programs, art and craft exhibitions, musical performances, and more.

One of the festival’s signature events is the Haiku Invitational. Haiku is a very short form of Japanese poetry. They might look simple, but writing outstanding haiku requires much skill and talent. Up-and-coming and established poets from all over the world submit haiku honoring cherry blossom trees. Top poems in six main categories are featured during the festival and are posted on the festival website afterwards.

Another event you shouldn’t miss is the Spring Lights Illumination. Local artists illuminate Queen Elizabeth Park with multicolored LED lights and vibrant projections to highlight the beauty of cherry blossoms, creating a unique experience.

Other event featured in the program of the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival include Sakura Night (a culinary experience dedicated to Asian fusion cuisine), Petal Picnics under cherry blossoms, Sakura Days Japan Fair, Cherry Jam Downtown Concert, BC Blossom Photo Watch Contest, Bike the Blossoms (a bike ride organized in partnership with Velopalooza), Plein-Air Blossom Painting Sessions & Challenge, Tree Talks & Walks, and more.

In 2020 and 2021, the event was held online due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival





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