Washington, D.C. - NEW DATES - March 29-April 2, 2020
Cherry Blossoms & The Blues!
There are two things that Washington DC is known for, other than politics of course. The cherry blossoms and the wonderful jazz and blues musicians of yesteryear that changed the American music scene forever. This unique trip will combine both national treasures!
The Cherry Blossoms
The cherry blossoms in Washington D.C. not only signify the beginning of Spring, but also the importance of international friendships. Japan gifted the US with over 3,000 beautiful cherry trees in 1912, as a sign of friendship between the two countries. The first Cherry Blossom Festival was in 1927 and has expanded throughout the years, each year attracting over 1.5 million people from around the world. It is a chance to see this beautiful city in all it's glory. D.C. gets very crowded this time of year, but it is so worth it. Luckily, they have a fabulous Metro system so we can avoid being stuck in traffic!
How do we know if the cherry blossoms will be at their peak?
The short answer is we don't. Determining the best time to see the cherry blossoms at their peak is nearly impossible. It truly depends on the weather. But these are the dates of the festival, so we are going to keep our fingers crossed. I CAN NOT GUARANTEE that the cherry blossoms will be out when we go!
Climate change and cherry blossoms.
Watch the following video, produced by the National Park Service, to learn more about how climate change is effecting the timing of the cherry blossoms.
In addition to enjoying the cherry blossoms by day (hopefully they'll be out), we will enjoy some blues by night. We will learn about the history of U Street - once known as Black Broadway. This neighborhood was the birth place of Duke Ellington, and home to numerous nightclubs that featured the likes of Cab Calloway, Pearl Bailey, Louis Armstrong, Sarah Vaughan, Billie Holiday and Jelly Roll Morton, among many others. Still a thriving music scene, we will enjoy a tour of the area and have dinner, followed by live music to feed our souls.
Washington D.C. is a walking city! We will take advantage of the Metro as much as possible, but be prepared to do a lot of walking...especially with the cherry blossom crowds in town.
Sunday, March 29
Our trip will have a somewhat flexible itinerary. Washington D.C. is such a wonderful place to just walk around and explore. All of the Smithsonian Museums are free (although expect long lines to get in.) I have outlined a possible itinerary below, but this can be easily changed based on the groups preferences, including the possibility of splitting up to attend whatever you want to see.
Like most of our trips, we will be renting a beautiful home for our visit to the DC area. This gives us a chance to relax and get to know each other. To get more for our money, we will be staying outside of the city and using DC's fabulous Metro system. Travelers are responsible for their own transportation to and from the DC/Maryland area. We can get into our home at 3:00, so plan your arrival accordingly. After everyone has arrived and settled in, we will go out for our Welcome Dinner. (Meals included: D)
Tuesday, March 31
If the weather cooperated yesterday, we can visit the National Arboretum during the day. Then we can go into the city to visit museums in the afternoon. If desired, we can go listen to music at night (not included in the price.) (Meals: B)
Thursday, April 2
Our trip ends after breakfast. Check out time is 11am. Transportation is provided to the airport or train station. Safe travels home.
Monday, March 30
Breakfast will be served at home each morning. If the weather is nice, this would be a good day to walk through the cherry trees, visit monuments, people watch, etc. The evening is all yours to do as you please. Those of us wishing to stay together will decide as a group what we want to do. (Meals included: B)
Wednesday, April 1
The morning will be free time to sleep in, relax or head to the city. In the afternoon, we will spend time with a tour guide who will give us a walking tour of U Street, the birthplace of Duke Ellington, once known as Black Broadway. Our tour will include the streets & back alleys of this amazing neighborhood and teach us the history behind the murals, theatres, music venues, and memorials. Along the way, we'll listen to a diverse playlist that will match up with the murals and venues. We'll have dinner at the 9:30 Club, which has a fabulous jazz show that night staring Leslie Odom Jr., a Grammy and Tony Award winner, best know for his performance as Aaron Burr in the Broadway hit Hamilton.