The National Conference of State Societies (NCSS) is the non-profit, voluntary umbrella association for state and territorial societies in the National Capital area. At one time or another, all 50 states have had active societies as well as the District of Columbia and our 5 territories: American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and CNMI. State society officers first informally met in the late 1930s to share ideas and programs. In cooperation with the D.C. Commissioners and with the Washington Board of Trade, the state societies helped to re-launch the first post-World War II Cherry Blossom Festival in 1948. State societies re-started the pre-war tradition of sponsoring state cherry blossom princesses and the U.S. Cherry Blossom Queen in that year to promote peaceful relations with Japan. NCSS is the only civic organization that has sponsored the National Cherry Blossom Festival® events every year for 67 years without interruption.