Friday, June 17, 2005

The Seattle Sun and Star: Chaos, creativity fuel Fremont parade

by Alex Kratz

Naked. Hippie. Loud.

Those three words define the Fremont Summer Solstice Festival, according to an informal survey conducted by solstice parade director Monica Miller.

Now, if you talk to anyone involved in the actual parade, they'll tell you a different story. They'll tell you it's about art, community, freedom of expression. They'll also tell you that it is partially naked, pretty hippie, and definitely loud. But that's not the essence of the parade. That's not the spirit of the event.

L.J. McAllister photo

Photo: Brian Kooser works on a robot head for the Fremont Solstice Parade.

Really, that's just the crazy naked bicyclists who precede the parade every year. They get all the press, all the hype, all the lasting impressions. People who work on the parade openly despise them.

The nude bikers take away from all the legitimate art that volunteers spend countless hours creating. With one exhibitional blow, months of hard work by solstice parade artists is knocked from our collective conscious.

Which giant wooly mammoth did you remember from last year's parade, the one made of paper mache or the one riding a ten speed?

Whichever the case, the solstice parade draws tens of thousands of gawkers every year and continues to grow and thrive in its seventeenth year of existence. (more)


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