2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival

2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival

I wasn’t sure I’d get to do it this year, but I did manage to slip away for a few hours and attend the 2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival.  The beef bowls were better this year (yay), there were sake samples (yay!), the cosplayers were out, the stage events were up, and the venders appeared to be doing a brisk business. (A special shout out to Brant Fuse and Sumo Fish — as usual, I scored a new t-shirt from him because I think they rock. If you go by his website and order a shirt, tell him AstroNerdBoy sent ya.) ^_^  All in all, it was a good time.  So, here are some photos I snapped with me new camera.  I have some video too, but I have to buy a new PC first just to be able to retrieve the files, to say nothing of playing them and uploading them, which I’ll probably do on YouTube in the future.

The Booths

Here were some of the vendor booths I encountered.

Vintage Kimono
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
Bushido Designs
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
Denver Bonsai Club
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
Denver Taiko
(They just released a new CD, which I bought.)
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
Fat Rabbit Farm
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
Gimme Anime
(They are in the process of establishing a reliable means of getting manga tankoubon for US fans to buy.)
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
A couple of baby shirts from Gimme Anime.
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
Japanese dolls for sale (vendor unknown).
Mochi ice cream — unusual.
Oyako
Pacific Mercantile Company Booth
Temple Raffle Tickets
Sumo Fish
(Excellent Japanese-themed t-shirts!)

The Crowds

With the weather being quite good (mid-80’s for highs, no rain), the crowds that came to the festival were pretty good-sized.

2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival

Cosplay

As you might expect, an event such as this brings out a few people in cosplay.  With the new camera in hand, I was a bit more aggressive in seeking these folks out. ^_^

2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
Wearing a hat isn’t much cosplay, but people were often stopping this couple to ask where they bought them.
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
Neko-mimi Komono
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
I’ve seen these two here before. ^_^
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
Well, a happi isn’t much cosplay, but what the heck. ^_~
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
Kagome and friend. ^_^
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
Dancing in the street!
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
I should have asked if he were cosplaying a specific character considering the wig, sword, and fan.
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
The lolitas this year weren’t scary. ^_^;;;
2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival
A couple of candidates for “Goth 2 Boss.”  ^_^
(Google it. ^_~)

On Stage

There were a number of performers on stage from a taiko group, a group playing the koto, martial arts, Japanese traditional dance as well as Japanese folk dance, and more.

Akido – one of the martial arts demonstrations.
Japanese folk dancing. Who will do this when these ladies pass on?
Japanese traditional dance with children.
Musical poetry recital – very Japanese. ^_^
Miwa-sensei playing the koto as part of Rocky Mountain Sankyoku.
Taiko with Toni and Lance — they’ve grown in size. ^_^
The yo-yo champ and long-time member of Taiko with Toni and Lance.
Lance on the far right and his wife Toni next to him.
Toni, Lance, and the rest of the taiko players come into the crowd.

I never get to stay as long as I’d like at this event.  Well, that’s the joys of the schedule I work and the need for sleep, which had caught up to me for sure. One year, I’ll have to stay and attend the Bon Odori part of Saturday’s events. I’m sure that would be interesting since the Denver Cherry Blossom Festival covers both the Sakura Matsuri and the Bon Odori festivals from Japan (the former done in spring and the latter in summer).

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6 Responses to “2011 Denver Cherry Blossom Festival”

  1. Anonymous says:

    This is pretty cool, but I’ve never heard of it. Does Denver do this every year in the summer?

  2. hughroe says:

    Got a feeling that one lad was trying to play Gintama, and failing.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Actually he’s doing spintop, and he’s the current world champion.

  4. hughroe says:

    Well, that explains why I was wrong….

  5. AstroNerdBoy says:

    This is pretty cool, but I’ve never heard of it. Does Denver do this every year in the summer?

    Yeah, they do. It is a two-day event though I don’t always get to go.

    Actually he’s doing spintop, and he’s the current world champion.

    Yeah, he is. In the past, he’s done demonstrations but I don’t think he did on Saturday.

    Well, that explains why I was wrong….

    Well, I didn’t know what Gintama was, if that makes you feel any better. ^_^;;;

  6. […] I was recently at the Denver Cherry Blossom Festival, the poetry reading-singing event was pre-staged by the MC giving the audience a very brief history […]

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