(ARA) - There's nothing more beautiful than the coming of spring after a long winter. As grass grows green and the air warms, nature puts on a spectacular show that manages to impress year after year. Nowhere is spring's beauty more vibrantly on display than at the National Cherry Blossom Festival Celebration in Washington, D.C. This year marks a storied and once-in-a-lifetime event, the 100 year anniversary of the arrival of Japanese flowering cherry trees in D.C.'s West Potomac Park.
The thousands of cherry trees that line the tidal basin in the park aren't a natural phenomenon, they represent a cross-cultural partnership between the United States and Japan that was forged 100 years ago. In 1912, a gift of 3,000 cherry trees was sent from Tokyo to Washington, D.C., and ever since, their annual blooming has been symbolic of the continuing friendship between the two countries.
The gift was orchestrated by world-famous chemist, Dr. Jokichi Takamine, who was also the first president of global pharmaceutical company, Daiichi Sankyo. Japanese-born Dr. Takamine, a longtime resident of the United States, had a vision to create a cultural association between the two countries' capitals: Tokyo and Washington, D.C. At a time when relations between the United States and Japan were less than strong, the gesture was considered very forward-thinking, and even Dr. Takamine could not have imagined how his simple token would transform into a nationally-celebrated event.
Dr. Takamine's effort to make a positive impact continues to serve as an important symbol of Daiichi Sankyo's social responsibility and culture of global collaboration. One hundred years ago, his approach to forging strong international partnerships was certainly innovative, but was especially impressive at a time without e-mail or teleconferencing, not to mention the cultural and language barriers that existed.
Daiichi Sankyo has a century-long tradition of discovering, developing and delivering innovative, life-changing methods. Driven by the example that Dr. Takamine set, the company continues to form partnerships that make a difference, including collaboration with other pharmaceutical and biotech companies to bring medical solutions to the patients who need them. This thinking and ongoing teamwork has fostered a robust pipeline of innovative medicines that will help millions of people all over the world for years to come.
The flowering cherry tree, which has long been a treasured species in Japan, has now become a cultural icon for Washington, D.C., and draws millions of international visitors to the city each year. The beauty of nature is undeniably on display during the festival, but so too is the goodwill between two nations. One hundred years after the Japanese flowering cherry trees made the trip from Japan to the United States, there's no better time to join the centennial celebration. To learn more about Daiichi Sankyo, please visit www.dsi.com.