Crowds Enjoy Waimea’s Cherry Blossom Festival

February 2, 2020, 11:00 AM HST (Updated February 2, 2020, 10:59 AM)
×

Click an image to expand
Bonsai trees were on display at Church Row Park during the Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival, Saturday. (Tiffany DeMasters)
Some of the 75 cherry trees at Church Row Park were in bloom Saturday during the Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival. (PC: Tiffany DeMasters)
A Chinese Lion Dance was performed for festival goers on Saturday during Waimea's Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival. (PC: Tiffany DeMasters)
A Chinese Lion Dance was performed for festival goers on Saturday during Waimea's Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival. (PC: Tiffany DeMasters)
Free origami demonstrations were available for festival goers Saturday at Waime's Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival. (PC: Tiffany DeMasters)
Some of the 75 cherry trees at Church Row Park were in bloom Saturday during the Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival. (PC: Tiffany DeMasters)
Bonsai trees were on display at Church Row Park during the Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival, Saturday. (Tiffany DeMasters)
Kohala Taiko Drummers performed for festival goers Saturday at Waimea's Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival. (PC: Tiffany DeMasters)
Local residents sold branches loaded with cherry blossoms cut from trees on their property to festival goers during Waimea's annual Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival on Saturday. (PC: Tiffany DeMasters)
Local residents sold branches loaded with cherry blossoms cut from trees on their property to festival goers during Waimea's annual Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival on Saturday. (PC: Tiffany DeMasters)
×

The skies were blue, the sun was shining and Waimea’s crisp, trademark breeze swept through the town as throngs of people came out for the annual Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival Saturday.

For the past 27 years, the South Kohala community has celebrated the ancient Japanese tradition of Hanami, or “cherry blossom viewing party.” About 75 cherry trees dot the grounds of Church Row Park. This weekend, some of their branches were putting out a display of deep pink blossoms.

“The trees are healthy and they always typically bloom in February,” said festival planning committee member Fern Galvelek. “These trees were planted a long time ago and they’re still flourishing.”

The festival has grown throughout the years, spreading across Waimea town. With various booths and vendors, the event has a lot of Japanese culture.

SPONSORED VIDEO

Crowds meandered around Church Row Park Saturday morning looking at bonsai plants, learning origami, watching cooking demonstrations or enjoying traditional Taiko drumming. Later in the day, Chinese Lions entered the crowd for the Chinese Lion Dance.

By the Kamuela Hongwanji, local residents were selling cherry tree branches that were loaded with blossoms.

The event also encompasses a lot of Hawaiian foods and traditions.

“It’s a mixture of what Waimea is all about,” Galvelek said.

Tiffany DeMasters
Tiffany DeMasters is a reporter for Big Island Now. Tiffany worked as the cops and courts reporter for West Hawaii Today from 2017 to 2019. She also contributed stories to Ke Ola Magazine and Honolulu Civil Beat. Tiffany is an award-winning journalist, receiving recognition from the Utah-Idaho-Spokane Associated Press and Society of Professional Journalists. Tiffany grew up on the Big Island and is passionate about telling the community’s stories.
ADVERTISEMENT

Print

Share this Article

Get Weekly Updates

Get a quick summary of what's happening on Hawaii with our weekly email of news highlights:

ARTICLE COMMENTS ( 0 )
View Comments