The annual Cherry Blossom Festival puts a new twist on Nashville Twang this Saturday, April 8 at Nashville's Public Square Park. The free family festival celebrates the friendship between Japan and America, and it boasts live music and dance performances, contests, children’s activities, food and more fun.

NEW MUSIC OFFERINGS AT THIS YEARS CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL

New to this year’s Cherry Blossom Festival is Junko Fujiyama performing original J-pop, rock and anime-themed songs. In addition, the Kamakura-Nashville Partnership band featuring lead singer Yoshie Sakamoto of bluegrass ensemble Blueside of Lonesome, will perform traditional country standards. Finally, local band Crazy Aces hits the main stage with instrumental grooves blending ‘60s psycho surf, Japanese-eleki and “twang fuzz.” Kids can also enjoy performances by local pop singer Kimiko and a Japanese high school dance troupe. Bring your cameras for photo ops with costumed characters like “Happy Kitty” and “Ninja Turtle.” The ninth annual festival takes place from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Prior to the festival, Sister Cities of Nashville hosts the Cherry Blossom Walk at 9 a.m. More info at nashvillecherryblossomfestival.org.