Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Cherry Blossoms in the CLE

The cherry blossoms are out in University Circle.
You don't have to travel to Washington, D.C., to celebrate the return of the cherry blossoms this spring. You can do it right here in Cleveland.

The Cleveland Museum of Art held a free event Sunday called Cherry Blossom Picnics. This was supposed to be an indoor-outdoor event, but rain and cold turned it into strictly an indoor event.

The weather wasn't ideal, but my friend Chris and I still enjoyed a few hours at the museum. Visitors wearing pink or white were admitted free to the exhibit "Shinto: Discovery of the Divine in Japanese Art," which has a regular admission charge of as much as $10. Many of the pieces are beautiful and rich in detail and others are intentionally the stuff of nightmares. Chris and I toured the exhibit on our own, but there was a guided tour as well.

We also went through "Gordon Parks: The New Tide, Early Work 1940-1950," an exhibit of works from groundbreaking African American photographer Gordon Parks. The black-and-white images are thought provoking and sometimes mesmerizing. One that will stick with me is "The Doll Experiment." No spoilers here, but let me know what you think of it if you see it.

The final exhibit we visited was Charles Burchfield: The Ohio Landscapes, 1915-1920. Burchfield was from Salem, Ohio, which is mostly in Columbiana County, and attended the Cleveland School of Art, now the Cleveland Institute of Art. The drawings in this exhibit reflect life in Northeast Ohio with an abstract bent.

While the weather limited our time outdoors, we didn't leave without seeing some cherry blossoms. They really are beautiful and a welcome sign during this season that hasn't quite decided it wants to be spring.

The Cherry Blossom Picnics, such as it was, ended at 2 p.m., which was about the time the sun came out Sunday. That might explain why so many cars were coming into the parking garage as I was leaving. Even though the organized activities were over by then, visitors still had a few hours to enjoy the museum and the cherry blossoms on the grounds and around University Circle.

The museum is holding this event again from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 28. I'm hoping the weather will be better that day so visitors can get the full Cherry Blossom Picnics experience, including the outdoor picnic. Don't forget to wear your pink or white.


  1. Beautiful! There's so much to do around Cleveland once the weather gets nice if you're willing to look.


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