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Bloomfest at Newark's Branch Brook Park
Last year's announcement of the addition of 1,000 cherry blossom trees brought the total park count to 5,000. Yes, Newark has Washington, D.C. beat; there are approximately only 3,750 trees on display at the Tidal Basin.Continue to 2 of 17 below.
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Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart
The south end of Branch Brook Park offers stunning views of the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart: the fifth-largest cathedral in the United States.Continue to 3 of 17 below.
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It all began in 1927...
A bit of history: In 1895, Branch Brook Park was the first county park opened for public use in the U.S. In 1927, Caroline Bamberger Fuld (sister of Louis Bamberger, the founder of now-defunct Bamberber's department store in Newark) donated 2,000 Japanese cherry blossom trees, starting the vast collection that stands today. Now at a sprawling 360-acres with 4,000+ cherry blossom trees, Branch Brook Park attracts over 10,000 visitors each April.Continue to 4 of 17 below.
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Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart, with Flowers
Another view of the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart.Continue to 5 of 17 below.
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14 Shades of Pink
There are currently 14 varieties of cherry blossoms in Branch Brook Park, so whip out those cameras and try to snap them all.Continue to 6 of 17 below.
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"You Are Here"
A helpful sign at the center of the event illustrating the vendors, restrooms, and clusters of trees. Also vital: the schedule for live music, cultural demonstrations, activities, and more.Continue to 7 of 17 below.
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Bounce House Mania
Pretty sure Branch Brook Park outdid your childhood backyard birthday party. Four bounce houses to choose from? Wow.Continue to 8 of 17 below.
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Spin Art Lives On
80s and 90s kids rejoice: spin art happened at Bloomfest.Continue to 9 of 17 below.
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No Soup For You
The food trucks were out in full effect. Longest line? The Original Soupman.Continue to 10 of 17 below.
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Red Velvet Funnel Cake, Fried Oreos, and Fancy Lemonade
Red velvet funnel cake? Yes, please.Continue to 11 of 17 below.
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Cobu Taiko Drum & Dance Troupe
The crowd was entranced by this performance from the Cobu Taiko Drum & Dance Troupe.Continue to 12 of 17 below.
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Cherry Blossom Archway
One of the cherry blossom trees forms a natural archway over the path.Continue to 13 of 17 below.
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A Stroll Through Pink and White
Families admire the cherry blossoms at Newark's Bloomfest.Continue to 14 of 17 below.
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Cell Phone Tour
Bonus: self-guided cell phone tours. Visitors can dial 973-433-9047, enter the code for the location of the park found on the sign, and hear historical and horticultural information.Continue to 15 of 17 below.
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This cherry blossom was ready for its close-up.Continue to 16 of 17 below.
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Even in the early stages, the blossoms are beautiful.Continue to 17 of 17 below.
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In a sea of pink and white, a little splash of yellow never hurt anybody.