The Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival took place in San Francisco's Japantown.  Alyssa Jeong Perry/KQED
The Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival took place in San Francisco's Japantown.  (Alyssa Jeong Perry/KQED)

PHOTOS: Cherry Blossom Festival Brings Crowds to San Francisco's Japantown

PHOTOS: Cherry Blossom Festival Brings Crowds to San Francisco's Japantown

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This weekend was the 51st annual Cherry Blossom Festival in San Francisco's Japantown. For two weekends, the neighborhood played host to vendors and performances celebrating Japanese culture.

It's considered the biggest celebration of Japanese-American culture on the West Coast. For some participants the festival is a family affair, representing the coming of spring.

On Sunday, the Cherry Blossom Grand Parade made its way down Post Street. Shiba inus, taiko drummers and cosplayers in anime attire could be seen all along the route. The grand marshal of the parade was the Bay Area's own Kristi Yamaguchi, former Olympic figure skater.

Traditional Japanese dancers were part of the parade at the 51st annual Cherry Blossom Festival in San Francisco's Japantown.
Traditional Japanese dancers were part of the parade at the 51st annual Cherry Blossom Festival in San Francisco's Japantown. (Alyssa Jeong Perry/KQED)
Traditional drum groups were part of the Cherry Blossom Festival parade.
Traditional drum groups were part of the Cherry Blossom Festival parade. (Alyssa Jeong Perry/KQED)
Cosplayers in various costumes were also part of the parade, highlighting the Japanese-American aspects of the festival.
Cosplayers in various costumes were also part of the parade, highlighting the Japanese-American aspects of the festival. (Alyssa Jeong Perry/KQED)
Ferdinand del toro the shiba inu walked in the Cherry Blossom Festival parade today for his first time.
Ferdinand del toro the shiba inu walked in the Cherry Blossom Festival parade today for his first time. (Alyssa Jeong Perry/KQED)
Bridget Keith from San Francisco is dressed up in Japanese street style clothing Ouji ka for the parade. “This day gives me an excuse to dress up. I don’t get too many opportunities to,” Keith said.
Bridget Keith from San Francisco is dressed up in Japanese street style clothing Ouji ka for the parade. “This day gives me an excuse to dress up. I don’t get too many opportunities to,” Keith said. (Alyssa Jeong Perry/KQED)

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