MONTEREY PARK — Planned and coordinated by community volunteers, Monterey Park’s Cherry Blossom Festival strives to provide a cultural arts event that offers a forum for learning, entertainment, fun, and support of community.

The 2014 Cherry Blossom Festival Committee and the City of Monterey Park will present the 17th annual Cherry Blossom Festival on Saturday, April 26, from 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. and Sunday, April 27, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Barnes Park, 350 S. McPherrin Ave. Admission is free.

Take the time to see, hear, and taste a bit of the Japanese and Japanese American culture through a first-hand experience of watching traditional Japanese dancing, hearing the resounding beats of the taiko drums, observing the mastery and various skills of martial arts, participating in the ancient art of the tea ceremony, or buying hand-made crafts or food with an Asian flair.

Other highlights of the festival include games and crafts for children, numerous cultural displays, and an international array of food, including many authentic Japanese items.

Raffle tickets are only $2 each. The top prize is $1,000.

Hula dancers perform at the Monterey Park Cherry Blossom Festival. (MARIO G. REYES/Rafu Shimpo)
Hula dancers perform at the Monterey Park Cherry Blossom Festival. (MARIO G. REYES/Rafu Shimpo)

Performance Schedule

Saturday, April 26

11 a.m.: Yuujou Taiko

11:30 a.m.: Mark Keppel Aztec Singers

12 p.m.: Opening ceremonies

12:30 p.m.: Kodama Taiko

1 p.m.: Torres Kenpo Karate

1:30 p.m.: Halau Hula Moani ‘a ‘ala Anuhea

2 p.m.: June Kuramoto (koto)

2:45 p.m.: Ryukyukoku Matsuri Daiko (Okinawan drumming)

3 p.m.: Local Mojo

4 p.m. Fujima Kansei (Japanese classical dance)

4:45 p.m.: Phyllis Chang (singer/songwriter)

Sunday, April 27

11 a.m.: Mark Keppel Pep Band

11:30 a.m.: Yoki Daiko

12 p.m.: Kuntao Martial Arts

12:30 p.m.: Koshin Taiko

1 p.m.: Wu Shu Martial Arts

1:20 p.m.: Azuma Kotobuki Kai (Japanese dance)

2 p.m.: Miko Shudo (singer)

2:45 p.m.: Taiko Project/Bombu/Kitsune

3:30 p.m. Hanayagi Rokufukumi (Japanese classical dance)

4 p.m.: Ohana Polynesian Dancers

4:45 p.m.: Matsuyama and Kujiraoka (koto)

Exhibit Hall

Saturday, April 26

11:30 a.m.: Earth Day presentation

12 p.m.: Illusions by Allen Oshiro

1 p.m.: Andy Matsuda, Sushi Chef Institute

2 p.m.: Kotobuki no Kai

3 p.m.: Manju demonstration by Brian Kito of Fugetsu-Do

4 p.m.: Bando Hidesomi

4:30 p.m.: Urasenke tea ceremony

5 p.m.: Nagauta (traditional Japanese music), kabuki dance

Sunday, April 27

11:30 a.m.: Kayama Puppet Troupe

12:30 p.m.: Kyo no Kai (kabuki)

1:30 p.m.: Children’s folktales by Sunny and Judy Seki

2:30 p.m.: Anime songs by Momotama

3 p.m.: Cosplay contest by Infotakus

3:45 p.m.: Hanayagi Rokufukumi Dance Group

4:15 p.m.: Magic Wayne

5 p.m.: Origami demonstration by Michael Sanders

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