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The International Cherry Blossom Festival

by Josh Barker
March 21st-30th is the International Cherry Blossom Festival in Macon. It will be the 32nd annual festival. It all started in 1949 when Mr. Fickling, a local realtor and co-founder of Fickling Company noticed a tree in his front yard. In 1952 during a trip to Washington DC, he discovered that is was a Yoshino Cherry Tree. He began giving more away in the community. In 1973, Carolyn Crayton loved the trees and asked Mr. Fickling to plant more. Macon’s number of yoshinos multiplied. By 1982, Macon celebrated its first world renowned International Cherry Blossom Festival. People from all over the world come to it. In recent years, the Mulberry Street festival has separated from the Cherry Blossom Festival, but they normally coinsidedatewise. The biggest hidden gem is the Third Street festivities. They include free horse drawn carriage rides and icecream. They are during the week. This is a good way to enjoy the festival. My favorite part of the festival is the lantern tour by the Ocmulgee National Monument. The International Cherry Blossom Festival has changed Macon forever.

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