After 33 years in Old Town, the venerable Occasional Pasadena Doo Dah Parade is ready for a change of scenery. Conceived as an antidote to the stiff formality of the Rose Parade, the Doo Dah Parade is relocating to a more fitting setting for its irreverence: East Pasadena, which looks now the way Old Town used to — moderately retro, slightly run down and studded with cool mom-and-pop stores (like Poo-Bah Records, Pasadena Architectural Salvage and Game Empire, just to name a few).
The parade itself is… a hoot? Wacky? Colorful, certainly. Words fail, as we have said before. Images are better, but nothing can compare to being out there yourself amongst so many flapping freak flags. This year, more than 1,200 revelers will “march,” representing “organizations” with names like BBQ & Hibachi Marching Grill Team, the Men of Leisure Synchronized Nap Team, Howdy Krishna, Martinis in the Morning, Drunk in the Garage, Flying Baby Street Racing and Stroller Cross, Count Smokula, and… you get the picture. Every year the parade is presided over by a Grand Marshall and a Queen, which is an elected position. Past winners include Queen Tequila Mockingbird, Queen Skittles, Queen Naughty Mickie and Queen Sierra Madre Sue. This year’s royalty is Queen Erica Valentine, the first man ever to wear the crown. The Grand Marshall is Corky Peterson, the former proprietor of CHROMOS, the bar where Doo Dah was conceived. So to speak.
This year’s festivities fall, of course, on May Day. Bring your own lawn chairs.
34th Occasional Pasadena Doo Dah Parade
Saturday, May 1, 11 a.m.
Colorado Blvd. between Altadena Dr. & San Gabriel Blvd., East Pasadena
Free; 626.590.1134; pasadenadoodahparade.info