Holidays Around The World: Washington State Apple Blossom Festival

Washington State Apple Blossom Festival

The oldest blossom festival in the United States, this event has been held annually in Wenatchee, Washington, since 1920 (with the exception of the World War II years). It began with a suggestion from Mrs. E. Wagner, a Wenatchee resident who wanted to see something similar to the celebration held in her native New Zealand when the apple orchards were in bloom. Originally called Blossom Days, the event grew in size and popularity until it reached its current status as an 11-day festival drawing up to 100,000 spectators.

In 1947 the name of the festival was officially changed from the Wenatchee Apple Blossom Festival to its present name, although it continues to be held in Wenatchee, the “Apple Capital of the World.” In addition to seeing the Wenatchee Valley orchards in full bloom, the events include parades, a foodfest, a marching band competition, and sporting events. In 1967 the Aomori Apple Blossom Festival in Japan became Wenatchee’s “sister festival,” and the two towns have exchanged visitors a number of times.

CONTACTS:
Washington State Apple Blossom Festival
2 S. Chelan Ave., Ste. A
P.O. Box 2836
Wenatchee, WA 98801
509-662-3616; fax: 509-665-0347
http://www.appleblossom.org
SOURCES:
AmerBkDays-2000, p. 326
BkFestHolWrld-1970, p. 89
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