Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Golden Days

I bet you are wondering what I mean when I say Golden Days.  No it is not a celebration for the over 65 crowd!  It is the celebration of the discovery of gold in the area by Felix Pedro which lead to the founding of the city of Fairbanks, Alaska.

Most places have some sort of celebration that is unique to them.  For some its tossing pumpkins, on others its preparing asparagus in 87 different ways to share with people but for Fairbanks, its celebrating the discovery of gold back at the turn of the century because this is what caused Fairbanks was founded in 1901.

If you wonder why the place is not named Felixtown, its because the city was named after a popular congressman of the time. The celebration began in 1952 and has grown into a week long celebration with parades, runs, barbeques, a street fair, dances, a rubber ducky run and all sorts of other things including the mobile jail!

On Saturday, the celebration kicks off with a parade that runs from Carlson Center, along the river, through downtown to the other side where it ends on Airport way,  a few miles away.  The parade has marching military bands, bands on floats, various groups attired in turn of the century gear,  ladies of the evening on foot and on roller skates, and of course the Alaskan equivalent of the Beverly Hillbilly's car.

This parade even has a review stand in the downtown area, not too far past the Greek restaurant.  The review  stand  has the announcer who lets everyone know which group is passing by because one of the tele stations is recording the parade to show the next day.

I've actually been in the parade over the past few years.  I usually play french horn with the community band who do not march.  They ride on a trailer and play music such as downtown, Hogans Heros, etc.  Nice bouncy tunes the audience likes.  I don't know if I'll do it this year as I've got so much to do in the next couple weeks.

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