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Events DC Cherry Blast, a premier event of the National Cherry Blossom Festival, is a celebration of the annual blooming of the cherry blossoms and inspired by Japanese nightlife. (Image: Courtesy Events DC)

Get a Taste of Tokyo at Events DC Cherry Blast!

Kon’nichiwa reader, and welcome (almost!) to the weekend. If you’re looking to shake up your routine, look no further: Events DC Cherry Blast! will take you on a night out in Tokyo without leaving Washington, DC. Make your way to Dock 5 at Union Market to celebrate the cherry blossoms bedecking the District and immerse yourself in the sights, sounds and scents of a Japanese-inspired streetscape.

The Spirits + Scents

First thing’s first, tickets are all-inclusive. That means access to an open bar featuring Suntory Whisky’s Toki and Hibiki blends, Kirin Ichiban beer and a sampling of Sake.

After you wet your whistle, taste offerings from six of DC’s most-celebrated chefs including:

These pros will cook up Japanese favorites like curry rice, ramen noodles, yakitori (skewered chicken), dorayaki (red bean pancakes), kushikatsu (deep fried meat and veggies), and okonomiyaki (savory pancakes).

The Sounds

If you haven’t heard of DJ Mel, listen up: this nationally-acclaimed DJ, notably recognized as “Obama’s go-to DJ,” is one of Texas’ most high-profile DJs. Inducted into the 2014 Austin Music Hall of Fame, DJ Mel’s past performances include Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits Music Festival, the 2015-2016 NFL Draft and the 57th Presidential Inauguration for Barack Obama, to name a few.

DJ Mel has won a ton of awards too, and you’ll understand why when you hear him spin – if you’re not too busy dancing.

The Sumo Wrestlers

Japan is the only country where sumo wrestling is practiced professionally but this weekend, you can see world-renowned rikishis, or wrestlers, go face-to-face in the nation’s capital. The competing rikishis include:

  1. Kelly Gneiting, 6'0", 440 lbs
    A five-time U.S. Sumo Champion, Kelly has represented the USA over a dozen times at World Champion-level competitions overseas. He also holds the Guinness World Record for the Heaviest Person to Complete a Marathon—he's run three marathons total.
  2. Roy Sims, 6'5", 380 lbs
    With an NFL and MMA background, Roy has won every National Champion title for which he’s competed in the past couple of years. He also was #3 at the 2016 World Sumo Championships and has won a medal (including gold) at the U.S. Sumo Open every year since his debut.
  3. Takeshi Amitani, 5'8", 240 lbs
    Takeshi is a five-time Japanese National University Champion and a semi-finalist at the prestigious U.S. Sumo Open.

If you’ve never seen a sumo wrestling competition in person and aren’t flying to Japan any time soon, this is your big chance to see this modern martial art practiced by the pros.

With a gaming lounge featuring Sony and Nintendo classics, interactive art demonstrations including artists No Kings Collective, Soul & Ink live t-shirt screen printing, origami demonstrations by DC Fray and a whole lot more, there’s sure to be something for everyone at Events DC Cherry Blast.

Snag a VIP ticket and you’ll get access to a private Tea Room with an exclusive menu by Maketto’s Erick Bruner-Yang and hand-crafted cocktails from DC’s own “mixtress” Gina Chersevani. Ready to have a blast? Learn more and buy your ticket at

As the official convention and sports authority for the District of Columbia, Events DC leverages the beauty, history and diversity of the most powerful city in the world to attract and promote a variety of events, resulting in amazing experiences. To stay on top of what’s happening in the District, link up with Events DC on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, or visit