The U District Cherry Blossom Festival is timed for peak bloom.
If you’re planning to make the annual pilgrimage to Seattle’s University of Washington to see the cherry blossoms bloom this spring, don’t miss the U District Cherry Blossom Festival. The festival starts this Friday, March 24 and continues through Sunday, April 2 in Seattle’s University District. It is timed to coincide with the peak bloom of the University’s cherry blossoms, which is predicted to occur at the start of April. Over 70 participating businesses in the U District will have cherry and blossom-themed food, drinks, and shopping specials for you to explore!
Note: this festival is not to be confused with the Seattle Cherry Blossom & Japanese Cultural Festival that takes place at Seattle Center during the third weekend of April.
Read on for more details!
The U District Cherry blossom festival is made up of participating businesses in the neighborhood. It’s a great way to show some support to local businesses while enjoying the beauty of the University’s blooming cherry blossoms for free. We suggest first taking a look around the festival’s website to decide which businesses’ specials catch your interest (although we also listed some standouts below). There is also a festival map you can consult.
Then on any day between March 24 and April 2, you can treat yourself to food, drinks, and shopping before or after viewing the cherry blossoms in the University’s quad. Some of the participating businesses are offering discounts, while others are concocting limited-time cherry blossom treats. All of them are within a 15-minute walk from the University of Washington.
Here are some festival highlights to check out!
- The Seattle Cherry Blossom Run takes place on Saturday, March 25 and Sunday, March 26. Saturday’s 5k run/walk as well as the Sip and Stroll 5k are currently full. However, you can still register for Sunday’s half marathon. Or just show up to cheer everyone on from the sidelines!
- The U District Farmers Market is every Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. You’ll find it at University Way NE (the “Ave”) between 50th & 52nd.
Here are just a few of the cherry blossom-themed food specials that U District businesses will be offering:
- Cherry fritters from Donut Factory (4336 Roosevelt Way NE)
- Sakura ice cream from Sweet Alchemy Ice Creamery (4301 University Way NE)
- Sakurajima sauce: a seasonal cherry blossom dipping sauce for all bowls and sandwiches from Sizzle & Crunch (1313 NE 42nd Street)
- Sakura cream bun from Saint Bread (1421 NE Boat Street)
- Cherry blossom pizza from Pi Vegan Pizzeria (5301 Roosevelt Way NE)
- Blossom Pink Cloud coffee from Oh Bear Cafe (4708 11th Ave NE)
- Cherry blossom pink noodle soup from Kai’s Thai Street Food (1312 NE 43rd Street)
- Cherry blossom boba with soft serve from Cold Plate (5240 University Way NE)
- Sakura katsu burger and cherry blossom shake from Just Burgers (4510 University Way NE)
There will also be special discounts and more. See the full list of food specials.
There will also be lots of cherry blossom-themed beverages being offered by U District businesses, from milkshakes and lattes to cocktails and beer. Here are just a few:
- Cherry Madrid latte at Leon Coffee House (1309 NE 45th Street)
- Cherry blossom frappe at Sip House (5001 Brooklyn Ave NE)
- Pink Lady Sweet Tea at Seattle Best Tea UW (4505 University Way NE)
- Cherry milkshake at Lu’s Seafood & Burgers (4752 University Way NE)
- Cherry milk tea at Xi’an Noodles (5259 University Way NE)
- Cherry Italian soda (with or without Red Bull) at Boba Smoothies (1409 NE 45th Street)
- Cherry margaritas and mojitos at Flowers Bar & Restaurant (4247 University Way NE)
- Cherry cider at Big Time Brewery (4133 University Way NE)
- Blossom Hunter Fruited Sour at Ladd & Lass Brewing (722 NE 45th Street)
- Cherry blossom cocktail at Agua Verde Cafe (1303 NE Boat Street)
See the full list of non-alcoholic drink specials as well as cocktails and brews.
Shopping and entertainment discounts
Here are a few retail deals and opportunities for you to check out in the U District during the festival:
- Admission discount of $4 at Burke Museum if you take public transportation (4303 Memorial Way NE)
- Free cherry blossom matches with a candle purchase at LULUMIÈRE (5200 Roosevelt Way NE)
- 25% off any Japanese and cherry blossom posters at Innervisions Posters (4548 University Way NE)
- 10% off the international section at Seattle Records (5521 University Way NE)
- 10% off most items at Pink Gorilla Games (4341 University Way NE)
- Cherry blossom-themed gear at University Bookstore (4326 University Way NE)
See the full list of retail discounts.
For more information, you can visit the U District Partnership website or follow them on Instagram for updates.
U District Cherry Blossom Festival
When: Friday, March 24 to Sunday, April 2, 2023
Where: University District
Cost: Free admission (participating vendor prices vary)