New Haven Cherry Blossom Festival takes place on Sunday

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — It was a beautiful day on Sunday for the New Haven Cherry Blossom Festival.

The sights and sounds of a glorious spring day in New Haven. The cherry blossoms were in full bloom on Sunday, putting on a show for thousands of onlookers.

“Good afternoon and welcome to the 44th annual New Haven Cherry Blossom Festival.”

With those words from News 8’s own Stephanie Simoni, it’s official. The decades-old Cherry Blossom Festival in Wooster Square was underway.

“It’s really New Haven welcoming the spring.”

Bill Iovanne, the festival emcee said they took a risk with the event since they plan it a year out and don’t know what the weather will be like.

“When you plan this a year in advance, you take a shot on whether the weather will be cooperative or blossoms going to stay on the tree,” he said.

With luck on their side, festival-goers enjoyed abundant sunshine, and blossoms in full bloom for the festival. The scene was something even ever-watchful eye of Christopher Columbus could approve of.

There was good music to keep the crowds entertained and of course, plenty of food for all. Families enjoyed some New Haven-style pizza.

Festival organizers say in this 44th year, they’re noticing a trend in the surrounding Wooster Square neighborhood– more families are making it a destination and that’s what they like to see.

Charlie Murphy, the co-organizer of the event said the people surrounding Wooster Square have changed.

“When we first moved in, I thought of it as a place with mostly older people living here. Now, it’s full of little kids and young families,” he said.

The final numbers aren’t in yet, but festival organizers think when it’s all said and done, this year will be the largest festival that they’ve had in their 44 years.

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