Hanami is the Japanese term for “flower viewing.” In Japan hanami almost always refers to viewing the cherry blossoms. In Japan the blooming of the cherry trees is followed on the evening news with the same passion that we see here in the states for “March Madness.” Cherry blossoms are only at their peak for about a week. During this period big groups gather beneath the blossoms to eat, drink and just enjoy the view.
Here in Portland we obviously have a long way to go before the cherry blossoms overtake basketball, but if you want to try your hand at throwing a hanami party, then you should head down to Waterfront Park soon. The Japanese cherry trees decorating the north end of the park are just beginning to bloom. One hundred cherry trees line this end of the park decorating the Japanese-American Memorial Plaza. Remember, the blossoms will only be at their peak for about a week, so try to catch them soon!