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2020 Nelson ‘Hanami’: Nelson Miyazu Sister City Association and NZネルソン日本人会 Nelson Japanese Society in NZ

In consultation with the Nelson Japanese Society, we are sad to announce the decision has been made to cancel the 2020 Nelson Cherry Blossom Festival.

The uncertainty around COVID-19 alert levels, the length of time social distancing and limits to gathering numbers continue to be necessary are all key factors in this decision. The health of our stall-holders, performers and the community is also our highest priority and we must act responsibly to maintain this.

There will however still be opportunity to celebrate the coming of spring and the cherry blossoms in Miyazu Japanese Gardens. This year we are encouraging ‘hanami’ where people take a picnic and enjoy the blooming of the sakura with their family or friends, at their leisure.

This is traditionally the practice in Japan around blossom time and we feel that this year it is the safest and most appropriate way to give thanks for our splendid Japanese gardens. It’s also an opportunity to take a breath & reflect on everything we enjoy about life here in sunny Nelson-Tasman, especially at this uncertain time.


This year we will be running a photo competition. Throughout cherry blossom season (19 – 29 September) you can post a photo taken at Miyazu Japanese Gardens to #nelsonhanami or send via email to . The photo can be of the blossoms, and/or people enjoying the gardens during the ‘hanami’ season. Prizes will include sushi vouchers and a special calligraphy name-sign of your choice by Nelson’s celebrated Grandmaster Calligrapher Akiko Crowther. Terms & Conditions apply – see

Thanks so much for your understanding & support. It is very disappointing to have to make this decision, but we know it is for the best. You can read more about the wonderful tradition of ‘hanami’ here

Ogenki de / Stay safe & well

Click here to find out more…

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