It is that time of year when everything begins to wake from its winter slumber. In Newark’s Branch Brook Park, this means that it is once again time for its iconic cherry blossoms to make their appearance. This year, Branch Brook Park Alliance predicts peak bloom to occur between April 4 and 14 (weather depending). This means that over 5,300 flowering trees will soon fill the Park with the sweet smell of blossoms and give the park its annual pink aura.  

To celebrate this momentous occasion, Branch Brook Park will host its annual Bloomfest event on Saturday, April 14! The free event is packed with “Japanese cultural demonstrations, children's activities, live music, a crafter's marketplace, food and more!” The park also hosts historic and horticulture walking tours when inquired. So, pack your picnic blanket or lawn chair, because there is a day full of activities for those with spring fever! To learn more about Bloomfest and the tours, see the Park’s website for more information:  

While you anxiously await Bloomfest and your tour, check out some FUN FACTS about the park: 

  1. In 1898, the Essex County Park Commission officially hired the Olmstead brothers—the famed landscape architects and designers of Central Park in Newark— to design the park. Branch Brook Park soon became the first county park to be opened to the public in the United States. 
  2. In 1927, Caroline Bamberger Fuld donated 2,000 Japanese flowering cherry trees to a display in Newark that would rival that in Washington, D.C.  Today, only about 1,000 of the original trees survive. 
  3. D.C. only has 3,800 today of 12 different varieties, meaning that Branch Brook Park is known for having the largest collection of cherry blossoms in the United States! There are also 18 different varieties of cherry blossoms in Branch Brook! 
    In 1976, the Newark Cherry Blossom Festival was established. The event is now celebrated annually. 
  4. In 1976, the Newark Cherry Blossom Festival was established. The event is now celebrated annually. 
  5. Branch Brook Park was listed in the State Register of Historic Places in 1980 and in the National Register in 1981.