Sakura Picnic Day 2019
The Cherry Tree Grove at Banksia Park in Bulleen was transformed into a vibrant Hanami (flower viewing) festival on Sunday 13 October 2019.
Clear blue skies and sunshine brought out many visitors to picnic under the magnificent 'Shirofugen' cherry blossom trees (Prunus serrulata) and shady oaks along the banks of the Yarra River.
The festivities were officially opened by speeches of the special guests:
Kazuyoshi Matsunaga Consul General of Japan in Melbourne
Paula Piccinini Mayor of Manningham Council
Tony Preston Japan Club of Victoria
Ross Ciaravolo President of Australia Japan Society Victoria
Sonja Terpstra Member of Eastern Metropolitan Region.
Visitors were treated to many traditional Japanese performances such as Zen dance by Melbourne Yosakoi-Soran Team, Kendo by Nenseikai Kendo Club, Tea ceremony by Chado Urasenke Tankokai Melbourne and Taiko and Bamboo flute by AYA.
Children of all ages tested out their paper-folding skills with free Origami classes put on throughout the day by ‘Cherry Friends’, the dedicated group of volunteers who care for the cherry grove along with the team from Parks Victoria.
For anyone who didn’t bring along their own picnic, a selection of food trucks kept the crowds well fed with delicious Japanese/Hawaiian, Korean & Japanese cuisine, crepes and of course great coffee.
Special thanks to The Cherry Friends volunteers and Japan Club of Victoria, the main organisers of the event this year.
The Sakura Picnic provides a perfect setting for relaxing with family and friends amid the cherry blossoms, sharing great music and learning about some of Japan’s great cultural art forms. Thank you for sharing this special day with us!