The World Loves A Parade!

Last Sunday was an annual family tradition of meeting up with the family and watching the Starlite Parade - part of the Portland Rose Festival. It's been a family tradition for at least two decades I think...a long time. A great fun and nearly free family tradition. 
Not my family, mind you. But a family that thankfully allows me to join in:

If you look closely, you might recognize (fr other blog posts) the little blonde girl on the far left in the red chair. 
This parade involves someone getting down to the right spot early to save spots for everyone. In this case, someone's Aunt Cindy and her friend showed up at noon and set out 18 chairs and three blankets and prevent other riff-raff from stealing our spots. And apparently, people WILL steal your spots if given any chance to do so. For instance, in the photos above, there is a green chair on the right. They originally asked if we could scoot together a bit so they could fit more chairs there. This just isn't allowed-it's great to be nice and all, but when saving parade seats, it's pretty cut-throat and you have to hold your own no matter what.

So to recap-Aunt Cindy was at this spot on the sidewalk at NOON. The parade doesn't start until it gets dark. There is a fun-run beforehand that is great to watch, it starts about 8pm. Aunt Cindy and Friend saved our spots for EIGHT HOURS. Slightly insane, right?? But highly appreciated.

The fun run is a great time because people dress up for it. We saw all kinds of great costumes:
men in dresses!
big muppet characters!
band members!
 If you're an ambitious sort, you can sell cheaply made goods at the parade by just strolling down the street with a cart full of whatever. Some jackass in our group bought my little blonde friend a horrible noisemaker.

 And then the parade began!!!!
And the jello shots were more frequently consumed!!
There were a lot of jello shots consumed.

I don't actually like parades that much, but what I found last year, when I joined this family tradition, was that there's a way to make parades really fun. I'll share with you - feel free to enjoy your next parade this way.
Almost every float or group that comes by you - you yell at them.

Someone in our group would yell something - so for instance, if this band marches by, you would yell:


Or someone in a car drives by - their name is on the car, so you yell their name as if you know them.
They actually find out what the most common girl's name is and then they yell out that name when large groups go by- like this year we did a lot of  yelling "GO TAYLOR!!!"

Or for this (blurry) guy from the Grimm cast, someone yelled something like -"THANKS FOR BRINGING THE HOLLYWOOD DOLLARS TO PORTLAND!!"

And when there are large breaks in the parade, all the kids get up and run out in the street and play ball or tag or just run around. In a busy downtown setting, having the roads closed to traffic is the best thing for kids!


  1. Parades always make me all weepy and happy to live in a small town. They're so COMMUNAL. Yours looks like a good one.

  1. Mom Taxi Julie said...:

    Well that sounds like HILARIOUS FUN!! I'm sure the Jello shots don't have anything to do with it haha.

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