I love a parade, truly I do.
In fact, for me, parades rank right up there with designing, sewing, and dressing up in beautiful, ridiculous, and/or flamboyant costumes (depending on the occasion, of course.) And, when you think of it, don't all those things go hand in hand with parades?! Well, at least, when you're the one marching down the street.
The Delano District St. Patrick's Day parade, held on Saturday, March 14th, 2009, was an excellent way for Wichita Handmade to make its splash!
The day was glorious: sunny, not uncomfortably cool, and not too windy, even for my sail-like wings. Though I arrived later than the rest of the group, just hanging out in the parking lot before the parade began was fun. The atmosphere took on a circus-like air as we mingled with clowns, bellydancers, furry and feathered critters, bikers, and--my personal favorite--leprechauns!
But, the best part, of course, is walking the parade route and seeing all the wonderful citizens of Wichita who came to see us! Our "float" consisted of a truck that displayed our hand-painted signs, lovely members of our group who donned green and picket signs ("Buy Local, Buy Handmade!"), a darling dancing girl with bells, a very un-scary leprechaun, and....um...that weirdo in the gold spandex. ;)
As a special treat, we distributed clay shamrocks to spectators, which were printed with our website address. They hung on chords so that they could be worn around the neck, or displayed elsewhere.
Everyone was very responsive. Several members of our group noticed spectators commenting positively on our float or trying to jot down our name. It is so wonderful to be part of a movement that not only promotes art, but encourages people to care about where their goods come from and how they are made. It is a strengthening of economy and community that we need not only in "these times," but always.