Monday, February 20, 2017

61: Mummers' Costumes



Some had it especially good!
The Mummers’ Parade on New Year’s Day here in Philadelphia is a tradition. Much loved are the string bands who now parade in Manayunk a month or so later, to the great joy of Philadelphians. The Manayunk, located on the banks of the Schuylkill River, is a neighborhood in the northwestern section of the city of Philadelphia.

The weather was unseasonably warm, Saturday, February 20, 2017, and it was the beginning of Presidents’ Weekend, so everyone came out in a festive, holiday mood, many dressed for the occasion. Granted it was a bit early to celebrate madri gras, but nobody cared.

Sixteen string bands participated in the parade.




Pretzels, a Philadelphia tradition, are sold
as we wait for the parade to begin.
Dressed and waiting for the parade to begin.




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Here they come!

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The bands played old traditions:
Oh Them Golden Slippers, She'll be Coming Around the Mountain,
etc.,
all to a four-beat march. 


The bands sold beads which help to defray the costs involved with the costumes.
The children loved the beads and all the fun.


Dress and ready!

 One of the banner holders told me that most bands have one person who makes all the band members' costumes. It takes her a full year to do this. Looks to me as though sewing all these costumes would take a year at the very least.
I found this theme unusual. 

This was a very warm day. But New Years was chiller.
What looks like flesh is actually fabric.

The themes are quite versified.

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Many families involve younger members of their families,
passing down their participation in the string band of their choice.


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Onlookers joined in, often dancing with the leaders of the bands.


Women were well represented
in the bands. Years ago no women
were allowed in the Mummers' parades.





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This band has a Chinese dragon theme, 
probably a tribute to Philadelphia's Chinatown.


I thought the band with the best costumes is this one that had a colonial theme, well suited for Philadelphia. 

Rear view of the costumes.

After marching these two members of the
band posed for me. 
That's the end, folks!
Hope you enjoyed this parade as much as I did. 
Bye for now,
Laurel
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