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Sunday, February 19, 2012

Pensacola Beach Mardi Gras Parade, 2012

Today's major event in our lives was the Panama Beach Mardi Gras parade.  Now the easiest way to experience the parade will be for you to just watch this two minute YouTube video.

Or maybe this four minute YouTube video.

But, of course, I am going to show you pictures too.

When I got up and looked out the window, the weather didn't look very cooperative.

At Mass, Father Paul mentioned Mardi Gras and the parade, even explaining the origins of Carnival, "the meat goes away" - he checked it out on Wikipedia.  Well, Fr. Paul noting the importance of the parade to many of us took care of the weather problem.  By the time I got home we had blue skies and sunshine.

Getting home wasn't easy.  I encountered my first traffic jam on the island.  There is really only one road that runs the length of the island and it is the parade route.  While it was only 11 a.m. and that was three hours before the parade starts, the krewes were lining up and socializing.

As the sign says, "Let the Good Times Roll!"
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Linda and I went out for a walk to check the parade route and preparations at around noon.  Parking was becoming tight.  These fellows all had parked their trucks across the street the previous night for front row seating.

This lady owns property on the main road.  That's her sign.  She says that she sells out the whole yard every year at every event.  (St. Patrick's Day will be next.)
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We saw several floats that were familiar from yesterday's parade, but this aircraft carrier was a new addition.  The sign above the flight deck looked pretty authentic.
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I think this qualified as the biggest car in the parade.

Krewe du Ya Ya was getting ready.
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And the Mayoki Indians were back, this time with two floats.
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Everyone seemed to have plenty of beads and plenty of horsepower.
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The parade started promptly at 2 p.m.  We all raised our hands and started fighting for the throws.

The Krewes rolled and threw.  Krewe du Ya Ya had the most color.
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The Blues Brothers had the most black and white.
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These two guys had Jake and Elwood down pat.

This Blues Sister had an eye for the camera.

There were quite a few interesting individuals among the krewes.
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By this time, everyone had collected quite a few beads and other throws.

In case you were unfamiliar with the "Moon Pie" that I mentioned yesterday, I picked one out of the air to show you today.

There were a couple of different techniques in play to try for extra advantage.  One fellow brought along a ladder.  Surprisingly, he didn't seem to sustain any major injury.

Another watcher had brought along her windshield snow scraper.  She used it to considerable advantage along the barrier.
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Now.  What do you do with all these beads?  You can wear them, bag them or just put them in a pile.
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We didn't do nearly as well as the more experienced hands but did bring back a few items in addition to beads.  Frankly I'm happy that the fellow next to me caught the bag of Ramen noodles.

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