Macon, Georgia’s International Cherry Blossom Festival is pleased to announce programming developments for the 39th Festival coming March 27 – April 5, 2020. Despite our humble beginnings, the festival has become one of the Top 20 Events in the South, Top 50 Events in the U.S. and Top 100 Events in North America. It has grown from a three-day festival with 30 events, to a 10-day celebration featuring hundreds of events – with over 80% being free to the public – planned to entertain all ages and backgrounds. The International Festival and Events Association awarded the 2019 Cherry Blossom Festival 21 awards for programming, marketing, fundraising, and merchandise including the Pinnacle Award for the Best Festival In The World in the budget category $500,000 to $1.5 million.
Festival President and CEO Stacy Moore and her staff have been working since the conclusion of the 2019 Festival to plan and implement the strategies necessary to produce and execute the best possible experience for patrons during the 2020 event. Alongside Festival Chair Dr. Ivan Allen and the Board of Directors, the 39th Cherry Blossom Festival has been painstakingly pieced together to offer memories in the making throughout the 10 days of the Pinkest Party on Earth!
The 2020 Art was designed by Macon resident Larry Najera. The piece will be used as a promotional poster, the cover of the schedule of events, on the back of a t-shirt, among other items to promote Macon and the Festival. The 2020 Commemorative Pin is on sale now at cherryblossom.com or at Robins Financial Credit Unions throughout Central Georgia.
Back by popular demand, the award-winning Pasta on Poplar will feature a fun wine and dine experience with a harvest table dinner in beautiful Poplar Park. We will kick the Festival off on March 27th with Pasta on Poplar which features an Italian style family dinner by Perfect Pear Catering paired with exquisite décor by Canaan Marshall designs. Light entertainment and spirits will cap off this evening under the stars in Downtown Macon. Reservations are required and can be made beginning February 14 at cherryblossom.com.
The first Saturday of the Festival in Downtown Macon will be filled with fun as the Wiener Dog Race and Bed Race steal the show. Wiener dogs from all over Georgia will be racing down Cherry Street for the title of faster Wiener dog of Cherry Street beginning at 11 am. There will also be a best dressed portion of the race that is sure to start the day off will lots of giggles and smiles. Join the fun on Cherry Street March 28th before the festival favorite Bed Race kicks off at 1 pm.
The Signature Black Tie Annual Favorite Cherry Blossom Ball is back and better than ever. We honor different countries each year to celebrate culture and diversity during the International Cherry Blossom Festival. This year we honor Mexico at the Fiesta Ball. You will be dazzled by the décor by Canaan Marshal and a performance by Danceando Promotions, you will think you have used your passport to travel south to experience Mexican food and culture. The carefully planned menu will delight all taste buds and serve as the perfect start to an unforgettable evening. We will culminate with dancing and entertainment by well-known Atlanta Party Band Bobby and the Aristocats! Reservations required and can be made beginning February 14 at cherryblossom.com. For more information, visit our website or events section of our Facebook page.
The Cherry Blossom Parade, which is an annual favorite takes place Sunday, March 29 and features colorful floats, marching bands, an F-15 flyover and this year’s Grand Marshal! We are excited to announce, the world’s most famous superhero Spider-Man will be the Grand Marshal for the 2020 Cherry Blossom Festival Parade in Macon, Georgia. The Festival’s Community Marshal features another superhero from right here in Central Georgia, Fire Chief Marvin Riggins!
Calling all Princesses! The Festival’s Family Movie Night on the lawn of Wesleyan College features the film Frozen 2! This is your first chance to see the Disney blockbuster outside the theater. Movie Night is free for families and friends who would love to pack a picnic and enjoy a night under the stars watching a movie together. Don’t want to pack a snack? We’ve got you covered with various snack and vendor options on site as well as free activities including inflatables to keep the kids busy until the movie starts.
3rd Street Park Festivities kick off Monday March 30 and take place each day Monday through Friday during the weekdays from 11:30-1:30. Don’t miss your chance to get FREE Coca-Cola, ice cream, donuts, carriage rides and for Founders Day Monday, March 30th, Mrs. Griffins BBQ Sauce will be serving free BBQ sandwiches while they last to celebrate. We will be celebrating each day with free food and music that will have you dancing.
One of the biggest and most exciting announcements we have is our headliner concert. This year, instead of hosting just one headliner concert at Central City Park, we are featuring TWO! As always, the nightly concerts are FREE with your $5 gate admission, and children 10 and under are Free!
Saturday, March 28 at Central City Park, we are going to Rock the Park as the Cherry Blossom Festival features Lonestar! Known for merging their country roots with strong melodies and rich vocals, Lonestar, comprised of Richie McDonald (lead vocals), Michael Britt (lead guitar & backing vocals), Keech Rainwater (drums), and Dean Sams (keyboards & backing vocals), has amassed RIAA-certified sales in excess of ten million album units since their national launch in 1995, and achieved ten #1 country hits including “No News,” “Come Crying To Me,” and their crossover smash “Amazed” (which was also #1 on the Billboard Hot 100, the first record since 1983’s “Islands in the Stream”, to top both charts). The band’s awards include a 1999 ACM Single of The Year for “Amazed” (the song also won the Song of the Year award), and the 2001 CMA Vocal Group of the Year. With over a 100 dates worldwide per year, they are celebrating over 20 years together. Lonestar’s highly anticipated CD, Never Enders, features ten new original Lonestar songs that bring the band’s trademark sound into the contemporary arena.
Saturday, April 4 at Central City Park, there will be a Party in the Park as the Festival welcomes Uncle Kracker to Macon! Before Uncle Kracker flew up the charts for 5 weeks at #1 with “When the Sun Goes Down”, a duet with good friend Kenny Chesney, country music might’ve seemed an odd place to find the Detroit-based good-time Kid Rock alumni. But after a few summer tours with Chesney, Uncle Kracker reached country’s Top 10 with his double-platinum crossover hit “Smile”.
Uncle Kracker has played sold out shows across the country and appeared everywhere from the American Country Music Awards to Late Night With Conan O’Brien. He is still having a blast, and fans worldwide undoubtedly will too when they see him on the road. “When I’m up onstage, I don’t feel removed from the people coming to hear the music,” he leaves off. “You can feel it, when they identify with you. Sometimes when I’m up there, I wanna tell’em ‘I’m not any different than you are.’”
The headliner concerts aren’t the only new events at Central City Park! Thanks to the support from some generous sponsors, we have a free Lumberjack show, a thrilling free Aquatic Acrobatic show, and a free Dinosaur show daily. We are also the only festival in Central Georgia to offer pay one price midway rides every single day, not just on the weekdays.
The Parade isn’t the only place to see Superheroes during the Festival! Central City Park will feature several Marvel Characters during the Festival including meet and greets with Spider-Man, Captain America on Heroes Day, and Black Panther. Visit cherryblossom.com for times and information regarding the meet and greets and all specialty days which offer discounted admission and rides.
We are so excited to continue to feature our Festival tradition Tunes and Balloons Festival Finale at Middle Georgia State University. With free kids activities, a concert by Macon Pops, a Hot Air Balloon tether and glow and Fireworks to send the Festival out with a bang! We will have over 10 hot air balloons tethering and glowing as the backdrop to a fantastic concert presentation by Macon Pops!
Macon Pops President and CEO Steve Moretti is thrilled with the continued tradition of Tunes and Balloons featuring Macon Pops. “The Cherry Blossom Festival is a one of the premier events in Macon. Given the history of this incredible festival, it is an honor to partner with Stacy and her team to headline the “Tunes & Balloons” event for the second year in a row”, said Steve. “It is the perfect way to cap off the end of our season…with a BANG!”
Visit cherryblossom.com or download the app for the full schedule of events. Save the date for the 39th Cherry Blossom Festival March 27 – April 5, 2020. The Pinkest Party On Earth!