Sunday, October 16, 2011

Santa Cruz Oktoberfest Parade, Part 1

16 October 2011

Having missed most of Oktoberfest, I made up for it by taking hundreds of pictures at the parade downtown on the final day.  The hard part is choosing which ones to post here; even after culling, there are far more than I usually put in one blog post, so I will split this into two posts.

Here's a video so you can experience the parade vicariously.

And here are the photos.  The first group in the parade was a perfectly ordinary marching band - because a parade is not a parade without one!
Faux Bavarian hats made of paper were the fashion rage of the day.
There were many, many dancing groups performing German folk dances.

Cute lil car.

This beer keg bicycle train was so cute!

I am not certain, but I think the children are clustered around a potted tobacco plant... anyone know for sure?

Lots and lots of parents with small children in the parade.  Cute.
Another dance group.  I should also mention that all of the floats that were with adult groups had beer dispensers on the back, which the parade participants were continually refilling their tankards with.
The floats were quite elaborate and very well made.
The Oktoberfest queen and her court in their flowers - a gorgeous float.

If you know the right people, you can run out into the parade and fill your cup!
A token swig.
Heyyyyyy.... they don't look German!

I guess these folks made the correlation between October and Halloween. The two little ones in the cauldron were a cute touch.  I'm not sure what the potted palm is about, though.

The Beer-Heads. This reminded me of Wisconsin's Cheddar-Heads...
This was the float of the local newspaper - I really liked this one although my photos don't do it justice at all.

And like every parade, small children love it!

More dancing...
Some ballroom dancers to lend a little more Brazilian flavor to this German themed parade.
All of the floats were pulled by these new red tractors - probably on loan from one of the area's many agricultural companies.  This float was really beautiful and the neck was articulated so that the swan's head could move around

Some of the dancers performed acrobatics as well as dancing.  Fun to watch!

To be continued...

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