The third annual Brookhaven Cherry Blossom Festival attracted thousands to Blackburn Park over the weekend as people enjoyed warm weather, live music, arts and crafts vendors, dogs in costumes and food fare from funnel cakes to barbecue ribs.

Former Brookhaven mayor Rebecca Chase Williams and her two dachshunds participate in the pet costume contest at the city’s Cherry Blossom Festival. (Dyana Bagby)

“The police were estimating there were 10,000 to 12,000 people out here just yesterday,” said Rebecca Chase Williams on Sunday. Williams is the city’s former mayor and founder of the festival. The festival was held March 25-26.

“[The festival] is doing what we always hoped it would do — bring our families and the community together,” she said as she enjoyed an orange cream popsicle. “What’s not to like?”

Zahrah Shabazz and Manny Diaz of Smyrna said they heard about the festival online and brought children Zen, age 3 months, and Kingston.

“We came out with the kids for some food and music … and the shuttle part is awesome,” Shabazz said of the festival’s shuttle service running visitors from nearby parking lots to the Blackburn Park entrance.

Zahrah Shabazz and Manny Diaz with children Kingston and baby Zen. (Photo Dyana Bagby)

“It’s a beautiful day and we love being out in nature,” Diaz said.

Hundreds of children packed the Children’s Village on March 26 while hundreds of people spread out on the lawn to live music from such local bands as The Breeze Kings, Gurufish and festival closer Ed Roland and the Sweet Tea Project.

A pet parade and costume contest also attracted hundreds of people on March 26 with Police Chief Gary Yandura and Councilmembers Linley Jones and Bates Mattison judging the costume contest.

Below are photos from Sunday, March 25 at the park:

 

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