Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s Sakura Matsuri
Saturday, April 29 and Sunday, April 30 from 10:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m.
Brooklyn Botanic Garden – 150 Eastern Parkway & 900 Washington Avenue, Brooklyn
Admission: $30 adults/$25 seniors and students/Free children under 12 and BBG members
New York’s rite of spring and the nation’s largest event in a public garden, BBG’s Sakura Matsuri features performances, demonstrations, and exhibits that showcase the best of traditional and contemporary Japanese culture. There will be more than 60 events and performances that will satisfy people with any interest in Japan, from tea ceremonies and ikebana to manga workshops. A variety of Japanese-related goods will be on sale as well.
Some of the highlights include performances from Cobu, a high-energy all-female taiko drumming/dance group; Samurai Sword Soul, martial arts masters; Takarabune, an Awa Odori entertainment troupe from Shikoku, Japan; Uhnellys, an indie rock duo from Tokyo. Japanese sub-culture fans will enjoy the BBG Parasol Society Fashion Show on Saturday and a cosplay fashion show on Sunday, as well as many J-pop-related workshops and performances at the J-Lounge at Osborne Garden. For those whose interests lie in the more traditional forms of Japanese culture, Dancejapan with Sachiyo Ito will perform elegant Kabuki dances; the Japanese Folk Dance Institute of NY will present authentic Minbu folk dances from around Japan; and Soh Daiko, NY Suwa Taiko Kids All Stars, and Taiko Masala will have taiko drumming performances on stage. There will also be tea ceremonies throughout the day, as well as bonsai and origami displays.
Of course, the real stars of this two-day event are the cherry blossoms. Bring a blanket, buy a bento, and find a spot to picnic under the sakura, which should be at peak bloom by this weekend. Check BBG’s Cherrywatch to keep track of the blossoms.
To enter the Garden, you must purchase a ticket in advance. For a compete schedule of events and to purchase tickets, please visit Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s website.