Philly Cherry Blossom & Spring Highlights at Shofuso Japanese Cultural Center

By 3/16/2021 10:41:00 AM ,

The Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia welcomes all to visit Shofuso Japanese Cultural Center this spring. A hidden gem in Fairmount Park, Shofuso is ready to receive visitors safely, all while enjoying the beauty of the Cherry Blooms to come.

The house and garden will open for the 2021 season on Saturday, March 20, in time for Cherry Blossom season. The site will be open for visitation Wednesday through Sunday, 11 am to 5 pm, through December 12, 2021.

New for 2021, visitors will see the just-completed Pebble Beach alongside the central pond. Based on newly-discovered 1957 drawings made by Shofuso’s original garden designer, Tansai Sano, Shofuso brought to life a traditional Su-hama Pebble Beach on the garden’s boat-landing shoreline.

This archetypal Japanese Garden motif invokes the spirit of the pebble strewn shorelines of Kyoto’s Kamo River and the rocky coasts of Japan, by incorporating elegantly designed stretches of pebbled beach along a garden pond’s lowest contours.

Special Events of the 2021 Spring Season

To celebrate the start of the 2021 spring season, JASGP is conducting the Shofuso Cherry Blossom Viewing, which includes both socially-distanced activities and virtual programming throughout April 2021.

From a Virtual Marketplace to a Cherry Blossom Viewing and Virtual Ohanami, plus a virtual 10K, there are a number of ways to recover and renew while enjoying Shofuso’s beauty this spring.

Shofuso Cherry Blossom Viewing: Virtual Marketplace March 20 through April 18

Vendors selling Japanese or Japan inspired goods/services will be linked to the website -

Shofuso Cherry Blossom In-Person Viewing Estimated early April

Every year when the cherry trees bloom, friends and family gather under the blossoms to have flower-viewing picnics, called Ohanami in Japan. Pick up a Philadelphia Cherry Blossom Ohanami map at Shofuso (or download it from and plan an Ohanami picnic to enjoy the simple pleasure of sitting outdoors and watching the delicate petals float on the spring breeze while enjoying fresh air under the blooming cherry trees around Philadelphia.

NEW for 2021, Japanese artist Hiro Sakaguchi hand-painted a new map of Philadelphia Cherry Blossom Ohanami – helping visitors find Cherry Blossoms throughout Fairmount Park as well as other spots around the City of Philadelphia.

Flowering cherry trees have been a symbol of friendship between Philadelphia and Japan since 1,600 cherry trees were gifted from Japan to Philadelphia in 1926 to commemorate the American Sesquicentennial. JASGP has been working with neighborhood communities continuously since 2008 to plant cherry trees in Clark Park, Franklin Square, and Morris Park to help build green and peaceful urban communities.

Shofuso Cherry Blossom Virtual Ohanami Saturday, April 10, 10 am – 11 am
$15/ $10 for JASGP Members

Spring starts at Shofuso with this Ohanami program, live from Shofuso, and will include a beautiful presentation of ohanami or cherry blossom appreciation, Tamagawa University taiko performance (pre-recorded in Japan), activities, demonstrations, and crafts that highlight cherry blossom culture.

This event is dedicated to Abana Jacobs, a colleague lost to COVID-19 in 2020 who worked with JASGP on the Subaru Cherry Blossom Festivals for many years.

11th Annual Shofuso Cherry Blossom 10k/5k April 10 through April 18
$45 race fee

This year, the Annual Cherry Blossom 10K/5K will be virtual. Upon registration through RunSignUp. runners can complete their distances on their own schedule at the sanctioned course among the cherry trees near Shofuso, on their regular training courses, on a treadmill, or anywhere that feels right.

Between Saturday, April 10 and Sunday, April 18, participants will complete the run/walk, submit their time, and tag Shofuso in selfies taken along the way or at the finish with the hashtag #CherryBlossom10K or #SpringStartsatShofuso.

All participants will receive a beautiful cherry blossom race t-shirt, a route map with selfie locations marked, a Japanese pump-up playlist, as well as free admission to Shofuso during the 2021 season. Prizes will be awarded for winners in fun selfie categories: Cutest pet, Most glamorous outfit, Most beautiful background, Silliest outfit, Most scenic route. The program is sponsored by Mentholatum, Philadelphia Insurance Companies, KPMG, Maido! and AGC. Registration ends at midnight on April 17

To learn more, visit -

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