Sunday, May 31, 2009
Just so you know, Portland gets a little crazy when the sun comes out and the town gets warm. And that craziness seemed to kick off tonight on account of the Starlight Parade. So I am far from an expert but the deal seems to be this: the Portland old schoolers go bonkers for the Rose Festival which is sort of like Gay Pride but it is for the whole state and you don't have to be gay. Viva La Oregon, etcetera. The Rose Parade is next week. Tonight was the prequel with the night parade of lit-up floats and marching bands, and corporate and philanthropic armadas and the high school girls who are vying to become the Rose Queen and have their name forever emblazoned on a brass plaque in the rose garden up in Washington Park. (As a side note, I remain disappointed that I cannot run for Rose Queen. Sort of took the fun out of moving to Portland for me. Apparently you have to be a high school student. Dang).
A whole lot of people lined the streets of downtown to watch the procession. My favorite floats were the Star Wars fans done up like storm troopers, the astronomy club that included an acappella choir that was singing about celestial bodies, and the letter carriers union who built a float out of tin cans in the shape of the St. John Bridge.
We watched the parade from Burnside and then hung out in a hotel bar that was full of people dressed like pirates (I guess there was a pirate float) and Rosarians in the lobby. Surreal.
Elliot Smith - Rose Parade (live)