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Doo Dah Parade

The wacky is back, but now on the other side of Pasadena

Posted: April 29, 2010 3:18 p.m.
Updated: April 30, 2010 6:00 a.m.

The "Boo-Boo Kitty" float will once again be part of the Doo Dah Parade, coming to Pasadena Saturday.

After 33 years in the Old Pasadena retail and entertainment district, the Doo Dah Parade will bring its notorious brand of wackiness across town on Saturday, May 1, stepping off at 11 a.m.

The relocation to East Colorado Boulevard places the parade in an older, retro neighborhood reminiscent of its long-ago ‘Old Town' roots. In fact, this year's Grand Marshal is Corky Peterson, former proprietor of Chromo's Tavern, where the Doo Dah Parade was actually born. This year surprise and hilarity will again run full throttle when inventive, if zany, art cars and floats accompany a legion of frolickers past the mom-n-pop shops along the shady tree-lined streets.

There will be wildly diverse entries such as a fleet of motorized "Kinetic Pastry Science Mobile Muffins," "Ocarina's Winged Dancing Creatures," a huge robotic spitting cat named "Boo-Boo Kitty," oddly-attired sound inventors known as "The Highland Park Thursday Evening Gentlemen's Society Circuit Bending Marching Band & Ladies' Auxiliary," and the "Pasadena Zombies," who execute a move-for-move true zombie send-up of Michael Jackson's "Thriller."

Known as the twisted sister of its counterpart, the Rose Parade, the Occasional Pasadena Doo Dah Parade began as a grassroots event in 1978 and grew to gain national attention for its eccentric and, often, irreverent satire. The parade was named by Readers Digest as "America's Best Parade," and was recently featured in the book "50 Places You Must Visit Before You Die!"

The 34th Occasional Pasadena Doo Dah Parade begins at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 1. It runs along Colorado Boulevard (between Altadena and San Gabriel Boulevards) in East Pasadena. The start is at Nina Street and Vinedo Street. The parade is free of charge and plenty of street parking is available. Come early and bring a lawn chair.
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