Today in Portland was the Grand Floral Parade, the finale of the two-week long Rose Festival. The festival is probably the biggest event in town all year (provided the Blazers don’t make the NBA finals) and it culminated this morning with a massive parade traveling through Northeast, Southeast and Southwest Portland. We managed to get out this morning to take it in from the corner of SW Park and SW Stark streets.
With many parts of the state represented (as well as southern Washington and the sister city of Sapporo, Japan) there were floats, bands and performers of many kinds taking part in the parade. Morgen loved the many different animals that included horses (some small, some large) and llamas.
But the excitement was certainly not limited to animals this morning. Many different modes of transportation were on display in the several hours we stood on that corner. We saw cars, bikes, John Deers mowers and even unicycles. Here are a few examples:
Finally, there were more than a few displays of exotic cultures. Several of them were Native Americans, including the float for the closest Native-owned casino. But more to Morgen’s liking were the tipico dancers that reminded her of her childhood in Panama (as an aside, if you’ve ever been in the Young’s house, you can see a very cool drawing of Morgen dressed like these women). There was also an interestingly dressed Mummers String Band that were as good at playing their instruments as they were fantastically dressed.
All in all it was a great experience. We were lucky to find a corner that was not too heavily populated and were as close as possible to the action. We did spend over four hours waiting for the parade to get to us (we were about 3/4 of the way down the route) and watching. But considering we’ve only been here two and a half weeks, it was a nice introduction to one of the biggest events to come to town all year.