2014 Kume Island Sakura Festival
Once again the sakura begin to bloom again on Kume Island. With this year’s surprisingly warm winter weather the very first blossoms arrived on New Year’s day. Now, however, the bright colors of the many cherry trees are at their peak. The island celebrated the cherry blossoms with the annual sakura festival.
Normally a two-day event, this year’s festival took place at the Fureai Park instead of the usual location Daruma Mountain. The reason for the change was the growing popularity of the festival and the limited parking and access around Daruma Mountain Park. Though there are many beautiful trees in the area, it was decided to use Fureai Park, the same location as the August Kume Island Festival for the stage events.
As with previous years the event featured live performances from singers, eisa groups, and a karaoke competition. For the second year local restaurants competed in the K1 Grandpre a competition to see who could produce the best food. Guests were given a marked set of chopsticks with each item in the competition they purchased. If they liked the dish they could show it by putting the chopsticks in the bin with that item.
This year Cypress Resort’s Pita Burger won.
The weather was clear and sunny for most of Saturday, so I also took the time to drive up to the Ara Mountain Path and see how the sakura were doing. Since there are no sakura trees at the sea-side Fureai Park it was well worth the drive. Here are some of my favorite sakura pictures from the day.