Spring has arrived, and with it comes the National Cherry Blossom Festival! For over a century, this annual event has been a symbol of springtime in the nation's capital, celebrating the gift of cherry blossom trees from Japan to the United States and honoring the cultural ties between the two countries. Trade Center Management Associates (TCMA) for the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center (RRB/ITC) has been a longtime friend and supporter of the Festival. Their work aligns with RRB/ITC’s mission to foster and strengthen closer international relations through business, diplomatic and cultural exchanges. Since 2014 TCMA has been hosting the Pink Tie Party, their signature fundraiser and the official Festival kick-off event. Known as one of the must-attend social events in the District, this year’s celebration was no exception.
March 16 was an unforgettable evening, where fashion took center stage. Over 700 guests showcased their best pink or blossom-inspired outfits. Upon entering the event, they strut their stuff down the catwalk and were greeted by paparazzi for their glam shots.
TCMA curated “The Shop,” an activation featuring fashion and food from around the world. The Shop partnered with Diplomacy & Fashion which features four designs from the “First Fashion Gala*,” a 2022 event that showcased 40 designers who have dressed First Ladies, First Gentlemen, Kings, and Queens from around the world.
TCMA’s Executive Chef Houman Gohary and the culinary team for Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center created delicious dishes inspired by each design. Guests experienced how design, fashion, and global flavors incite these delectable bites.
Party-goers also enjoyed sips and bites from popular DC restaurants (Dirty Habit DC, Estuary, Dovetail Bar & Restaurant and Planta among others). ARTECHOUSE DC served up their innovative cocktails and mocktails paired with an original XR activation at the House of Suntory Bar. Local mixologists competed to create the “Official Cocktail of the 2023 Festival”. “Yoshino,” created by Attila Czutor of SHŌTŌ, was crowned winner for the drink’s creativity and originality featuring hand-crafted House of Suntory products with a cherry blossom twist.
During the event, the collections of DaJon J. Designs and Antowan of A.FLEETON were flaunted on the “Blossom Runway” by DC’s own, Models Inc. The queens of Absolutely Dragulous wrapped up the fashion show by gracing the stage with their presence. The program was emceed by Fox 5 DC’s Guy Lambert.
All funds from Pink Tie Party support the mission of Washington DC’s iconic National Cherry Blossom Festival, ensuring Festival events remain primarily free and open to the public. The National Cherry Blossom Festival continues through April 16. For a complete schedule of Festival events, please click here.
*The “First Fashion Gala” is founded by the non-profit, Diplomacy Through Fashion, Inc. Led by Indira Gumarova, wife of the Czech Republic Ambassador, His Excellency Hynek Kmonicek, the organization advocates for sustainable fashion, educates emerging diplomats and designers about the role of fashion in diplomacy, and promotes designers. Proceeds from the “First Fashion Gala” funds scholarships for low-income or single-parent students who want to study diplomacy or fashion. Learn more at diplomacyandfashion.com