March 3 — The Sawtelle Cherry Blossom Festival is scheduled for Stoner Park, 1835 Stoner Ave. in West Los Angeles, on Saturday, March 3 from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
The event is sponsored by the Japanese Institute of Sawtelle and its Sawtelle Gakuin (Japanese language school) with participation from the Consulate General of Japan and the 11th Council District of the City of Los Angeles.
Greetings from Consul General Jun Niimi will include comments about the 100th anniversary of Japan’s donation of cherry trees to the people of the United States.
Councilmember Bill Rosendahl, representing the Westside residents, will recognize Frank and Masako Okabayashi, long-time leaders of the Westside Nikkei community, including JIS and Bay Cities Gardeners, along with Nikkei seniors in their 80s and 90s.
The taiko class from West Los Angeles Buddhist Temple is scheduled to perform.
Much of the day’s program will involve intergenerational talent shows and field day activities, such as ninin sankyoku (three-legged races), donatsu kui (donut-eating), and tsunahiki (tug of war).
Admission is free and ample parking is available.
Cherry blossoms should be in bloom around the borders of Stoner Park.