Baoshan cherry blossom festival about to bloom
Shanghai’s annual Cherry Blossom Festival begins Friday at Gucun Park in Baoshan District, with online reservations, health codes, masks and temperature checks required for all visitors.
The event, initially launched in 2011, was suspended last year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
It runs through April 12 with strict virus-prevention measures to ensure the safety of the large number of visitors expected, said Yang Xin, director of the Baoshan Greenery and Public Sanitation Bureau.
Visitors are required to register their names and identity card numbers and purchase tickets beforehand on the park's official WeChat account (gucunpark_fwh) or Baoshan Media Center's app.
Tickets for adults are 20 yuan (US$3), 10 yuan for students and 4 yuan for people between the ages of 60 and 64. There's no charge for those 65 and over, the physically challenged and medical workers.
The park has more than 14,000 cherry trees of 110 different species, the largest in the city, which recently started blooming. Hundreds of Sunny Blossom trees, a new species planted at the end of 2020, have also begun blooming. The cherry flowers will be in full bloom in late March.
Other flowers in the park, such as tulips, orchids, rape flowers and narcissuses, bloom at different times, said Zhang Zhong, director of the district’s ecological development headquarters.
Measures have been put in place to keep the number of visitors within the park's maximum capacity. Authorities have allocated extra parking spaces to accommodate about 8,000 vehicles.
As part of the festival, 900 women will take part in a 10-kilometer race on March 28. Dressed in pink shirts, the women will run through the cherry blossom forest.
The number of runners has been reduced from 3,000 in 2019 as a COVID-19 prevention measure.