Cherry Blossoms in Fukui, Earliest Bloom Ever Recorded

Cherry Blossoms in Fukui, Earliest Bloom Ever Recorded

Twelve Days Earlier Than a Normal Year

On March 22nd, the Fukui Local Meteorological Office reported that cherry blossoms have bloomed. Since observational records began from 1953, this is the earliest the flowers have bloomed, 12 days sooner compared to an average year.

Source: https://www.fukuishimbun.co.jp/articles/-/1282708

Soothing the Heart of Cherry Blossom Viewers with Lanterns’ Glow

Soothing the Heart of Cherry Blossom Viewers with Lanterns’ Glow

Fukui’s Atagozaka and Yokozaka, with 140 Lanterns

From March 23rd, located on the north side of Mount Asuwa, within Fukui Prefecture’s Fukui City, the steps of Atagozaka and Yokozaka will be lit up with 140 lanterns. With the soft light of Japanese candles as far as the eye can see, the paths are filled with a magical atmosphere. The lanterns will remain until April 7th.

Known as the “Corridor of Lights’ (灯の回廊), the lanterns are set up every year to coincide with the Fukui Sakura Festival. This time, however, the festival has been suspended due to the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), as a measure to ensure the safety of those visiting the are to view the cherry blossoms.

Just after six in the evening, the iron lanterns placed along the stone steps are lit up, illuminating the steps and buildings with a faint orange glow.

A third-year elementary school girl, visiting from within the city alongside two family members, said with a smile, “I want to come back again, once the cherry blossoms are fully bloomed.”

Paper lanterns have been set up around Mount Asuwa by the “Sakura Lights Association”, a group created by local residents within the Asuwa district, and will also be lit up from the 23rd.

Source: https://www.fukuishimbun.co.jp/articles/-/1053602

Paper Lanterns Mounted on Sakura Trees for Evening Illumination by Asuwa River

Paper Lanterns Mounted on Sakura Trees for Evening Illumination by Asuwa River

Fukui City, Illumination From the 23rd at Mount Asuwa

Due to the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), the Fukui Sakura Festival in Fukui Prefecture’s Fukui City was suspended; however, paper lanterns for the evening illumination will still be mounted on the cherry blossom trees this year. The installations of lights onto the row of cherry trees along Asuwa River was completed on March 21st; and from March 23rd, Mount Asuwa will also be lit up.

208 paper lanterns were set up by the Asuwa River Paper Lantern Story Executive Committee, a group created by the local residents south of the bridge, on the row of cherry trees along the south bank of Asuwa River, stretching from the Sakura Bridge to the Tsukumo Bridge. First-year students from Meirin, Meido, Koyo, and Kawanishi junior high schools wrote tankas (“short poems”) on Japanese paper to fix onto the lanters, taking passages from “Komagin”, a collection of tankas by Akemi Tachibana, a poet from the end of the Edo period, with each passage beginning with, “Joy is akin to…”

Light installations began on March 14th; on March 21st, the final 30 lanterns were installed by the executive committee and members of “SAKU-Light”, an idol group with a focus on supporting traditional crafts.

“The planned event was suspended, but I hope that everyone can enjoy the scenery of paper lanterns mounted on the row of cherry trees,” said the executive committee chief (aged 25), as the buds of the cherry blossoms continue to expand. The lanterns will use solar-powered LEDs, and remain installed until April 11th.

At Mount Asuwa, the “Sakura Illumination Association”, an organization created by local Asuwa residents, solicited aid from businesses and individuals, becoming able to set up 325 lanterns. This year, photos of animals from the Asuwayama Amusement Park were pasted onto the lanterns, and kindergartners from the local childcare centre affixed stickers of cherry blossoms, as fresh ideas for the occasion.

“Almost all group reservations at this shop have been cancelled, but I hope there will still be visitors to see the cherry blossoms at Mount Asuwa,” said the head (aged 70) of “Nakamuraya”, a tea house operating at Mount Asuwa. The illumination will begin from March 23rd until April 30th, between 6:00 p.m. and midnight. The illumination at Atagozaka will also be lit up, until April 7th.

Source: https://www.fukuishimbun.co.jp/articles/-/1052487

Chilled Flowers, Blooming Cherry Blossoms Shining with White Snow

Chilled Flowers, Blooming Cherry Blossoms Shining with White Snow

Snowfall in Fukui Prefecture, 11 Centimetres in Ono City

Within Fukui Prefecture on March 16th, the Reihoku region saw a mix of snow and sleet resulting from a winter pressure pattern, after having had clear weather until the late morning; in the Kuzuryu area of Ono City, 11 centimetres of snowfall was measured by 10:00 a.m. With strong winds, there was a complete reversal from the recent warm temperatures; it became a day were the flowers had frozen over.

At the Fukui Prefectural Green Center in Sakai City, the fully bloomed Oh-Kanzakura (an early-blooming species of cherry trees) had gathered a layer of snow, boldly standing out with its contrasting pink and white colours.

According to the Fukui Local Meteorological Office, the temperature lows for the morning of the 16th had dropped to a cold 1.4⁰C in Fukui City, and 0.0⁰C in Ono City. As for temperature highs throughout the days, becoming like Ono City’s early February average of 4.8⁰C, all ten observations sites had recorded single digit temperatures.

Until 7:00 p.m. of the same day, with the strong winds, the fastest instantaneous wind speed was recorded at 20.0 metres per second in Obama, and 19.7 metres per second in Tsuruga.

For the 17th, under a high-pressure system, it is expected to be sunny throughout the day.

Source: https://www.fukuishimbun.co.jp/articles/-/1048786

Fukui Sakura Festival Suspended, due to Novel Coronavirus

Fukui Sakura Festival Suspended, due to Novel Coronavirus

Light Installations Equipped on Row of Sakura Trees along Asuwa River

On March 5th, Fukui Prefecture’s Fukui City announced that the 35th Fukui Sakura Festival, scheduled for March 28th, has been suspended due to efforts in preventing the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

According to the city, the decision was made to ensure the safety of the cherry blossom viewers, and has equipped the rows of sakura trees along the Asuwa river with light installations.

Source: https://www.fukuishimbun.co.jp/articles/-/1041994