Please join us for the Grand Parade in 2023
The Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival Grand Parade brings color and cheer to the streets of San Francisco and Japantown! At a future in-person festival, the Grand Parade will occur on the final Sunday of the Festival. A lively procession of taiko drummers, dancers, and decorative floats will celebrate the Festival and the Japanese traditions that thrive here in Northern California.
The Grand Parade will depart the Civic Center Plaza at 1:00 P.M., proceeding up Polk Street to Post Street, and ending in Japantown at Post and Fillmore Streets.
Streams of colorful floats will be carrying individuals of Japanese American and other Asian American communities. Japanese classical (Buyo) and folk (Minyo) dance groups from around the U.S. and Japan will perform throughout the parade route like a myriad of floating butterflies. Highly honored Boy Scout Troops from the Japanese American communities will march proudly along the streets. The Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival Queen and her Court, as well as sister festival courts will cascade their way to Japantown in beautiful floats. Anchoring the parade is the hoisting of the San Francisco Taru Mikoshi by over one hundred strong individuals. It is a spectacle not to be missed, so be sure to come on out to cheer on the hundreds of participants!
2023 Grand Marshal: Kina Grannis
Kina Grannis is a musician and actress most recently known for being featured in the hit film Crazy Rich Asians, where she performed her viral cover of “Can’t Help Falling In Love“ in the iconic wedding scene. She has performed on Jimmy Kimmel Live and Ellen and sold out tours worldwide. Her songs and videos have amassed over a billion streams, and she continues to regularly release music to her millions of followers.
Grannis is currently leading a worldwide campaign to find a life-saving donor for her mother who has bone marrow cancer. Kina’s mother is Japanese, and there is very little representation of AAPI folks in the donor registry, so the campaign has gained particularly fervent support. It has garnered the support of a long list of influencers and celebrities, including actors Gemma Chan, D’arcy Carden, and Harry Shum Jr, youtubers Colleen Ballinger, Kurt Hugo Schneider, and The Bucket List Family, musicians Aloe Blacc, top chef winner Melissa King, comedian Ronny Chieng, among many more. She and her sisters are looking to share this story far and wide, not only in the hopes of saving their mother, but to save the lives of many others with blood cancers in need of finding their match. They have signed up over 6,000 potential donors already in the US alone, as well as many more worldwide, and they’re only just getting started.
Kina is partnering with Be The Match, a national organization committed to finding bone marrow donors for patients in need. Kina and her family will be at the Festival hoping to spread the word and find a match for her mother. Please visit the Be The Match booth to register!