Mardi Growl Parade, Old City, Knoxville, March 2023
There’s nothing quite like a mix of children, cute pups, and Mardi Gras colors to brighten up the end of winter and usher in spring in East Tennessee. Throw in the Fulton Band leading the way with a bit of “When the Saints Go Marching In,” and I can get misty-eyed remembering Mardi Gras past on the Gulf Coast.
I was accompanied by Urban Boy on this venture and he had a blast. He didn’t make it for last year’s parade and the pandemic made sure he didn’t see one for two years before that. That takes him back to three-years-old and perilously close to pre-memory times for the young guy. It’s a tiny example of the kinds of things young children have missed that would otherwise have been a part of their lives. He thought maybe he remembered it once it got started.
The parade and festival, sponsored by Young-Williams Animal Center, and billed as the “sixteenth annual” (it’s hard to know anymore if that means it has happened sixteen times in the last eighteen years, or if we are counting the missing two), stepped off at 11:00 am in the Old City, heading out Jackson toward the World’s Fair Park.
There pups and owners were judged and the site was set up with booths offering all sorts of doggie treats, health and health tips, spaying and neutering and more. It’s a positive, happy event for everyone involved and a delightful way to begin our festival season. Next up, just next week (Friday, March 17) we shift gears from cute puppies to cute leprechauns, with the St. Patrick’s Day Parade.
In the meantime, in addition to the photos above, I’m including the full trove below for your pleasure. Just remember to look serious on the outside while you are smiling on the inside, just in case your boss walks by while you are enjoying visions of furry friends.