Saturday proved the festival goes beyond just the bloom.
As the rain fell on the cherry blossom trees outside, inside the celebration was anything but dreary. Hundreds came out for “Family Day” at the National Building Museum, one of many events of The National Cherry Blossom Festival 2012.
Families participated in activities put on inside – dressing up in traditional Japanese Kimonos, crafts and live music, all in the name of Washington’s most beloved springtime traditions.
“It’s raining outside and you don’t need to pay to go to the move theater, it’s expensive or go to other places, it’s expensive and you can have 4 or 5 hours here running with your kids,” Jasmeen Gomez of Alexandria said of bringing her two children to today’s event.
For some who traveled to Washington, DC from out of state just to see the blossoming trees, the weather brought some disappointment. Sothe “Family Day” was the perfect cure.
“It feels great on a rainy day to be inside with the kids,” Gorab Bohil, who travels with his family every year from Dallas, Texas this time of year for the blossoms said, “Yesterday was beautiful and the kids today are inside."
This year the celebration is extra sweet, as it is the 100th year anniversary of the original first planting, a gift from Japan.
To commemorate the occasion the United States Postal Service issued a centennial stamp, unveiled at today's event for the first time.
The Art Director who worked for years on the stamp with the artist also has DC ties, he is from Falls Church, Virginia.
Today people lined up at the event to purchase the very first festive stamps.
“I went to the Cleveland Park post office and it was sold out so they said to come down here," Chris Jensen said.
For many today's weather may have brought dissapointment. But others, like Hanil Kumar from Fairfax, thought the spirit of the cherry blossoms followed inside.
"It makes me feel more respectful of other cultures, and this is the best way to bring the people together," Kumar said.
The blooms may not last through the weekend's expected rain. But the actual festival, with many other events like today's, runs for another four weeks.