Japantown (Post and Buchanan Streets), San Francisco
April 14 – April 22
The Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival (櫻花節) is the largest cherry blossom celebration in North America outside of Washington DC. Each year, over 200,000 people attend this dazzling festival showcasing the Japanese American culture and heritage. Find out more about the cherry blossom celebration in Japanese culture.
- Saturday, April 14
- 11:30am: San Francisco Taiko Dojo
- 12:30pm: Opening Ceremony
- 1:00pm: Michiya Hanayagi and Michisuya Hanayagi Kai
- 1:30pm: Nihon Buyo Kiyonomoto
- 2:00pm: Childrens’ Tsuzumi Challenge
- 2:15pm: Ito Yosakoi
- 2:30pm: Kali Martial Arts
- 3:00pm: Essence with Masayuki Koga
- 3:30pm: Northern California Naginata
- 4:00pm: Sakura Mino Doo Koo Kai
- 4:30pm: World Oyama Karate
- 5:00pm: Kendama USA
- Sunday, April 15
- 12:00pm: San Francisco Taiko Dojo
- 1:00pm: 2018 Queen Introductions
- 1:30pm: Yamasho-Kai
- 2:00pm: Soko Joshi Dojo
- 2:30pm: Ensohoza Minyoshu
- 3:00pm: Kendama Prelue
- 3:30pm: El Cerrito High School Japanese Club
- 3:45pm: San Francisco Wushu Team
- 4:15pm: Suio Ryu Iai Kendo
- 4:45pm: Rinka Buyo
- 5:15pm: Kendama USA
Here is the 2018 schedule for the Peace Plaza Stage for the second weekend (April 21 & 22):
- Saturday, April 21
- 12:00pm: San Francisco Taiko Dojo
- 1:00pm: Rosa Parks Elementary School
- 1:30pm: Tsuzumi Challenge by Willow Creek Academy
- 1:45pm: Ocarina Group from Tohoku
- 2:15pm: Zanshin Dojo
- 2:45pm: SF Okinawa Kenjin Kai
- 3:15pm: Senjukai Hawaii
- 4:00pm: Aoba Taiko
- Sunday, April 22
- 11:00am: San Francisco Kendo Dojo
- 12:00pm: Enshin Karate
- 12:30pm: Shorinji Kempo
- 1pm to 3:00pm: No Performances, Parade
- 3:30pm: SF Awakko Ren
- 4:00pm: Dream Show with TiA (Naruto singer)
- 4:45pm: Sakura Ren
- 5:15pm: Raffle Drawing
Parade is on Sunday, April 22, 2018 at 1 pm begin at Civic Center, proceeding up Polk to Post Street and ending in Japantown at Post and Fillmore streets.
Other fun activities during the festival:
- Sakura 360
- Osaka-Style Rakugo In English
- Cherry Blossom Under The Stars: A Night Time Event
- Taste Sake From Different Regions Of Japan
- Hiro Kimono School Show
Transportation and Directions
From Union Square: Take the #38 bus from Geary Street or the #2, #3 bus from Sutter Street. Get off at the Laguna or Buchanan stop.
From the Marina or Dogpatch districts: Take the #22 Fillmore bus, and get off at Fillmore and Sutter Street
Get off at Embarcadero Station. Take the #2-Clement bus at Steuart and Market Street (Ferry Plaza), and then get off at the Sutter and Laguna Street stop.
Or get off at Montgomery Station, then catch the #38-Geary bus to the Fillmore and Geary stop. Alternatively, you can walk to Sansome and Sutter street from Montgomery Station, then take the #2-Clement or #3-Jackson bus and get off at the Sutter and Laguna Street stop.
Limited Free Bicycle Parking available at the Japantown garages.
Main Garage: 20 Secured Spaces, 20 Rack Spaces
Fillmore Street Annex Garage: 8 Rack Spaces
Tell the driver to drop you off at the corner of Fillmore and Geary Street (Fillmore and Sutter Street also works – whichever is closer).
Important: If you’re driving, bear in mind that both Sutter Street and Post Street will be closed to traffic between Laguna and Fillmore Street. Parking will be limited.
For parking, be on the lookout for potential Cherry Blossom specials posted in front of parking garages at both Van Ness (east of Japantown) and Divisadero Street (west of Japantown)!
- You can park at the Japantown Garage on Main (1610 Geary Blvd) or the Annex (1650 Fillmore St) about $2-3.50 an hour.
- Rosa Parks Elementary School is hosting a Parking Lot Fundraiser on April 14, 15, and 21 The parking lot is at 1400 Ellis Street (cross Webster Street), only a few blocks away from the festival. All day parking – $30. Open at 8:30 a.m. and closes at 7:00 p.m. We’ll have volunteer parents and community members on site at all times, and ALL PROCEEDS fund the school community.