Sunday, April 10, 2011

National Cherry Blossom Festival, 2011 (Part 1)

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Yesterday, for the first time ever, we headed down to DC for the Cherry Blossom Festival. We have been trying to go for the past several years, but every year it either rained or the kids had some sort of even that prevented us from going. This year, both kids had something they were supposed to be doing and rain was in the forecast, but we decided it was just the year to go. So, we went.

Walking to the parade site.

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We didn’t know how crowded the Metro was going to be, so we were on the Metro by 8am hoping to beat some of the people traffic. It turned out to be a good thing we left that early because the Metro was pretty quiet and once we hit the Mall it too was deserted. We made our way over to the parade site, and had our spots by 9am…with very few people around us. However, come 10am, we were part of a human sandwich 10 blocks long. (There was a Russian woman that kind of made her place right between the kids and I and I swear she stood so close to us we could smell her breath. Landon said she kept touching him and knocked him off the curb he was standing on. Ever notice how European’s don’t have those same spatial boundaries we Americans do?! After living in Germany all those years I still can’t handle it!!)

Pre-crowd seating.

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Four jillion people along the parade route.

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There were Roller Girls

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Miss District of Columbia Outstanding Teen (isn’t she cute!)

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Lots of marching bands

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Lots of men and women in uniform…OORAH! (That’s for you, Dad!)

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There were also some floats, various performers and giant balloons, like this one:

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And these:

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The parade lasted 2 hours, but after an hour we were frozen and hungry so we went to the Museum of Natural History to warm up and have lunch. After spending $50 on 2 chili dogs, 2 slices of pizza, 3 bags of chips, a blueberry parfait and 2 drinks, Tony and I cried a little then headed on our way over to the Tidal Basin to see the trees. Unfortunately the height of the season has already passed, and while the trees did still have some blooms on them, a lot of the flowers had already fallen off and were turning green.

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It was so overcast that most of my pictures came out looking like the one’s above, but I did get one really nice close up…

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This post is already super long, so I’ll do part 2 in a little while. Stay tuned!

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