In a ceremony on March 27, 1912, First Lady Helen Herron Taft and Viscountess Chinda, wife of the Japanese ambassador, planted the first two of these trees on the north bank of the Tidal Basin in West Potomac Park. By 1915 the United States government had responded with a gift of flowering dogwood trees to the people of Japan. In 1927, a group of American school children re-enacted the initial planting; the first festival was held in 1935, sponsored by civic groups in the nation’s capital. Suspended during World War II because of hostilities between the United States and the Empire of Japan, the festival resumed in 1947 with the support of the Washington, D.C. Board of Trade and the D.C. Commissioners. In 1948, the Cherry Blossom Princess and U.S. Cherry Blossom Queen program were started by the National Conference of State Societies.
The annual Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington DC took place in the past couple weeks. Last year when I attended the festival for the first time, I was amazed at the beautiful spring scenery. This year I was able to take some photos. Enjoy.
More photos on in my flickr set