Cinco De Mayo

HUMP in the Park has been postponed till the end of May. Want your band to play? Contact
The Celebration of People Parade, spearheaded by Bob Ray and Richard Elsom, was an authentic jubilee of Butte County characters. For those of you jaded by Chico’s Parade of Lights, where yahoos drive around in their SUVs flashing their headlights and signaling allegiance to Moloch, the Celebration of People Parade is a lung full of fresh air. My favorite moments were: the Corning Kiddettes, 60 girls ages 6-8, dressed in full cowgirl regalia, twirling their hats to the beat of “Wild Wild West"; an almost naked Lew Gardner marching as the emperor for KZFR; and the giant carved drum! But the Clampers float outta Paradise was pure Butte County. Three Civil War hand-painted-sign-carrying dudes, who on the command of their leader would drop to their knees, while the commandant hand-drilled a hole in the wooden board. Colonial Williamsburg this is not. I loved it and believe that this parade will mature into one of Chico’s greatest and most fun events.

I also attended the Butte County Cultural Tourism function at the Sierra Nevada Showroom and wined and dined with writers from such culturally diverse publications as Fish Sniffer Magazine and the San Francisco Chronicle. Upon arriving I was greeted by the familiar plucking of Wood, Chico’s answer to the porch scene in Deliverance, which is to say that these fellows know how to get a barefoot hoedown up and running.

My wife and I self-toured the mechanized bottling room and with a quick turn found ourselves on a lengthy walkway that was modeled on the Star Wars catwalk where Luke and Darth Vader battled. If I knew that cutting my hair would get me into ritzy affairs like this, I would have chopped the locks long ago. Bling bling.

During the meal, some of the writers got up and “entertained” us with fishing stories (stick to writing, fellows), while local jazz fiends Holly Taylor and Eric Peter soothed us into our luxurious surroundings. Bringing it all full circle was the performance by Ballet Folklorico Mexico, who had been dancing since 10 a.m. in the parade. As the evening wore down, the performers informed us that Cinco De Mayo was not Mexican Independence Day, but a day celebrating the multiple suicide of five brave young Mexican soldiers who threw themselves from a castle on advancing French troops. Viva la revolución!