Even a little spring shower couldn’t stop Washingtonians from kicking off the 2019 National Cherry Blossom Festival in style at the 13th annual Pink Tie Party on March 22. Presented by ANA and hosted by TCMA (A Drew Company), the festive gathering brought together DC trendsetters and tastemakers at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center where the fashionable set experienced an evening filled with spring-inspired bites from top restaurants, live entertainment and unique event activations to celebrate the start of cherry blossom season.
This year’s menu took on a whimsical spin with offerings anchored by the culinary team of the Reagan Building, led by Executive Chef Xavier Deshayes. Tastings from the in-house caterer included a playful vegetable garden where guests could pick their own crudité plate from an array of veggies displayed as a garden plot, vibrant salads featuring colorfully toasted seasonal flowers, and light, fanciful dessert stations filled with crystallized floral cupcakes, ethereal macarons and mini cheesecakes scented with rose water.
Local restaurants were on hand to provide additional bites including spring pierogies from ANA at District Winery, Mexican chocolate pudding with macerated strawberries from Schlow Restaurant Group’s executive pastry chef Alex Levin and Tico, and foie gras custard on raspberry macarons from Chef Sébastien Giannin of Kingbird. A rosé bike pedaled around the Atrium Ballroom offering guests sips of Whispering Angel’s The Palm, and ARTECHOUSE offered signature augmented reality cocktails.
There was no shortage of photo opportunities at the spring soiree – backdrops came in the form of a floral wall courtesy of Ketel One’s Botanical Bar, and ANA’s augmented reality video booth where guests were transported to scenes of Japan and blooming cherry trees. Additionally, party-goers were invited to swing into spring with a blush-hued swing-set and TCMA’s lounge featured the popular “magic mirror” photo booth.
As guests walked through the main atrium space, they were treated to high-energy entertainment throughout the night from indie-soul band Oh He Dead, an impressive performance infusing tap dance, juggling and digital poi sticks from renowned entertainer Yusaku Mochizuki, and live art painting from Simon Bull, the official 2019 festival artist.
All proceeds from the evening support the National Cherry Blossom Festival’s year-round programs and initiatives.
The 2019 National Cherry Blossom Festival runs through April 14 and includes a full slate of spring programming, including signature events, Blossom Kite Festival, Petalpalooza and the annual festival parade.