The Northern California Cherry Blossom Queen Program was held on April 9 at the AMC Dine-in Kabuki 8 in San Francisco Japantown. The 2022 court is, from left: Princess Katy Akiko Drennan, Princess Michelle Chieko Catherine Heckert, Queen Stephanie Misa Doi, First Princess Sydney Matsuko Kasson, and Princess Ashleigh Suzu Takemoto. The event included a group dance number as well as individual talent segments.

The new queen, Stephanie Misa Doi, 27, from Pleasanton, is sponsored by Sho Chiku Bai, Takara Sake USA. A graduate of Claremont McKenna College, she works at SEI (Strategic Energy Innovations) and is active in community organizations, including Japantown for Justice and Buddhist Church of Stockton.

The first princess, Sydney Matsuko Kasson, 24, from Sunnyvale, is sponsored by the Japanese American Museum of San Jose. She is a graduate of Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and is part of the Experience Design Team at Cisco. 

The court will participate in events during the second weekend of the Cherry Blossom Festival. For more information, go to:

Photos by Mark Shigenaga

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