Hanami, the annual Japanese celebration of cherry tree blossoms, is one of the most anticipated times of year at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. Though the blossoms peaked early this year, the two-day Sakura Matsuri Festival this weekend is still an amazingly cool exploration of Japanese culture, both past and present, from anime stand-up comedy and big-band J-pop musical performances, to traditional tea ceremonies and flower arranging. There’s even sword fighting! Almost every area of BBG will be dedicated to the festival, and each day is packed with activities and demonstrations, from 10am to 6pm. Online ticket purchasers get expedited entry to the festival (tickets here) and the festivities continue, rain or shine, so plan ahead. And, check out the garden’s other gorgeous Japanese collections: tree peonies and the Bonsai Museum.