Tag Archives: holidays

Small Town Parade

If you’ve never experienced an all-American, small town parade, you’ve missed out on a beautiful part of Americana.  My mom grew up in the little town of Fremont, tucked up into the northeast corner of Indiana.  Every summer, we make the trip up for the town’s Music Fest, which includes a parade, and, seriously:  who doesn’t love a parade?  This year my grandparents, who have poured themselves into this community for decades, were chosen to be the grand marshals!  Here they are, waiting for the parade to start:

Here, the parade begins with the veterans of the American Legion leading the way with the colors.  Parade attendees always stand and cheer.

You can’t have a parade without a sweet motorcycle gang.

Fremont’s finest!

Here come Nana and Papa, followed by the high school band!

An all-American parade should always include the Daughters of the Revolution.

The DAR handed out flags, which delighted my sister.

Some things in a small town parade make no sense, but they’re awesome anyway:

This was the little guy’s first parade!  Between all the candy thrown from marchers and his flag and all the noise, he had quite a great time.

Small towns and farming communities are made up of a very different breed of people compared to cities.  For example, a local preacher is also an Iron Man competitor:

I have no clue what to caption this next picture, although I think he was looking for a parade in small town West Virginia.

Small town parades have to include tractors!

Small town parades do not end uncertainly; they include some creative finale:

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Today marks a day in which communities all over the world celebrate Fat Tuesday, a day of self-indulgence, before the holy season of Lent.  The city in the U.S. most famous for its Mardi Gras celebration is, of course, New Orleans.  Theirs is a raunchy celebration of insanity, and definitely not a family oriented party.  Keep your children away if you do not desire for them to see parts of the human anatomy usually kept under wraps.  And the crowds!  Just look at Bourbon Street, courtesy of www.zimbio.com:

Rio de Janeiro is home to another famous Carnevale celebration, reminiscent of a Las Vegas show, but with a more ethnic flavor and a slightly terrifying parade:

And look, Colombia has fire breathers!

Perhaps the most famous, and my personal choice, of Fat Tuesday and Carnevale celebrations comes from Venezia, or Venice, a “floating” city of wonder and romance.  Carnevale is celebrated with elaborate parties, stunning costumes, exotic masks, gondolas, fireworks, and food.

*courtesy i.telegraph.co.uk

*courtesy www.destination360.com

The following photos are from www.italyguides.it, a gorgeous website with great information on my favorite country.

Enjoy Martedi Grasso!!!

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Time for Something Sweet

Holly asked me to go out to the station van and get the Halloween candy out of the back seat.  She told me to use a milk crate to help carry it all in, which turned out to be a good idea.

I’ve never seen such a variety of glorious candy.  Holly had found something to entertain everyone’s taste:  Milky Way, Twix, 3 Musketeers, Snickers, Almond Joy, M&Ms, Tootsie Pops, Tootsie Rolls, SweetTarts, Nerds, Dots, Laffy Taffy, Reese’s Cups, and KitKat bars.  I ripped open bags, my smile growing as metallic wrappers and fluorescent colors reminded me of the trick-or-treating escapades of my childhood.  Danae, the Amazing Intern said she had never seen me “look so much like a little kid.”

Taking two great handfuls from each of the giant bags, I filled a lime green bucket and a sky blue bucket with a more-than-adequate variety to send anyone into a diabetic coma.  The most enjoyable part has been watching staff dig through the buckets like small children, picking a favorite or something one has not tasted in a while, sharing trick-or-treat memories with one another.  As Holly said, “Halloween is the best time of year for rediscovering your favorite candy.”

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