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This year marks the 100th anniversary of Japan’s gift of 3,000 cherry trees to the United States, symbolizing spring’s arrival, international friendship and nature’s beauty. To celebrate the centennial, the National Cherry Blossom Festival, in Washington, D.C., will showcase the beautiful gift with a five-week (March 20–April 27) district-wide spectacular featuring more than 200 international cultural performances and 90-plus special events.
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The nation’s largest springtime celebration “pinks” the nation’s capital with a parade (April 14), waterfront fireworks (April 7), a kite festival (March 31) and a Japanese street fair (April 14). Outside the festival, signature capital cultural events include a video game exhibit at the Smithsonian American Art Museum (opening March 16), the White House Easter Egg Roll (April 9), Filmfest DC (April 12–22) and “Look Both Ways: Street Arts Across America,” a celebration of street-art traditions (May 5–13). www.nationalcherryblossomfestival.org