The clouds parted and there was a light parade
December 8, 2013 | For most of the Saturday, it seemed that the Festival of Lights Parade in Palm Springs would be a dreary and miserable affair.
As a winter storm moved in, the winds raged and intermittent showers dampened enthusiasm for sitting on a curb watching a parade. But perhaps as a good omen, a lovely rainbow was visible above the hills behind my house for most of the day. (I'm still searching for that pot of gold!)
Even as late as 4pm when I left home to pick up Réal it was drizzling heavily most of the way into Palm Springs. But the intrepid parade watchers toted our winter gear and chairs to the usual location in front of the Palm Canyon Theatre where the night before we had seen the opening of Shrek the Musical. At first it seemed there would be very light attendance at this year's parade, but as the time got closer, more and more people realized it was actually quite nice out and came out to watch. By parade time, the usual dense crowds lined Palm Canyon Drive.
In amongst the old standbys, like the massively decorated Coca-Cola delivery truck, were some terrific new things, such as a float from Tonga Hut. It had a discernible theme and was executed with style.
Many of the neighborhood associations were there with their giant balloons, some of them lit by a spotlight mounted on the back of a pickup truck that proceeded them down the parade route.
Sadly, several of the balloons did not float aloft, but had descended to street level and were, in fact, being carried along by what looked like unhappy minders.
Every year I try to take pictures of the many marching bands in the parade. Every year I am disappointed. The battery-powered lights are just not bright enough for a sharp picture, and the photos are usually composed of various colored squiggles.
Then there are the photos of brightly-lit entries that are reduced to pixillated wonders by camera motion or other operator error. Some of them, like the one here, are fun. Most are just ugly.
Last updated on Apr 29, 2016