San Antonio de Areco, Argentina – November 2019 – Gaucho Festival

We have been fortunate to attend a number of amazing events, those truly unique in the world – I can’t believe what we just saw type of events.

The San Antonio de Areco Gaucho Festival is one of those events! (caution – something this cool has resulted in a fairly long posting with 40 photos)




The town of San Antonio de Areco is about 60 miles/100 KM from Buenos Aires, but in feel it is a world away.




It has a relaxed feel, where the local dogs just cruise around town greeting visitors. This little guy hung out with us for the first 1/2 hour we were there.




It is known as the ‘Cradle of Tradition’, or ‘Capital Nacional de la Tradicion’ for all of Argentina. The Gaucho Festival is their premier event of the year.

Lasting 5 days the Feast of Tradition culminates with an exhibit of traditional dance, followed by a parade of gauchos. The dancers wore authentic period clothes.













At the edge of town is the Ricardo Guiraldes Crillo Park. The park has a museum dedicated to the gaucho.







Nearby there were numerous vendors selling gaucho-ware.




The most amazing part of the day was the parade which consisted of over 4000 horses and riders! This view is of them making their way into town from the park.




Across the ‘Old Bridge’






Into another park that acted as a staging area.




It was here you began to get an appreciation of the beauty of the horses, as well as the very stylish look of the gauchos.






There were entire herds of horses just hanging out in the park.



With 4000 horses and riders some had to wait a bit for their turn to parade.




While most were in groups of two or three a few larger groups rode together.



Horses were everywhere, including on front lawns of houses.




But it was time for the parade. This rider, carrying the flag for the festival, lead the parade.




And for the next few hours we were treated to an amazingly stylish parade.































These gauchos gathered for the ‘Grand Finale’….




A number of riders showing their herding skills by driving a group of horses through the streets of the town by themselves.







What could be better than a beautiful warm spring day with a jacaranda tree blooming in the background, and a gaucho showing his skill.




With the parade over it was time for a cold cerveza while sitting on your horse! Our day in San Antonio de Areco was fantastic, a memory that will last forever.






Columbus – July 2019 – Doo Dah 36

It’s the 4th of July in Columbus, which means….Doo Dah!

This years motto is Slaying Political Dragons with Satire Since Dark Ages of 1984 (The Official Flyer is below)

This can mean one thing – the fun, silly, strange, weird and wonderful people of Columbus are marching in the streets. With the same bad national joke for the last 2.5 years the political satire was less, but still lots of photo ops were there for the taking.


















































New Orleans – May 2019 – One Final Look

We had a great few days in the Big Easy, coming away with fantastic memories, and lots of photographs.

Nola = New Orleans, LA (abbreviation for Louisiana) NOLA



Nola is a city with their own language and culture.



The home of jazz music.



One of the best places for local food like Po’ Boys is Mothers.



There are plenty of horse drawn carriages for the tourists, resulting in carriage jams.




The number of wide boulevards are surprising for such an old city.




Louis Armstrong Park – more Nola celebrating jazz.




The locals are friendly, and at times had free beer!



The French Quarter, while touristy, is a unique place.



Plenty of street entertainment.




St Louis Cathedral is impressive.



More views of the Quarter.




Plenty of Voodoo stores to choose from, should you need them.




Did I mention music!




But this New Orleans parade is over….




Time to roll on out of town. À la prochaine.





New Orleans – May 2019 – Mardi Gras World

New Orleans does parades better than any other city in America, possibly the world. For Mardi Gras season alone there are more than 75 parades.

Making the props and floats for the parades is a big business. The largest company in this industry is Kern Studios.



In 1947 Blaine Kern was hired to make a float after someone had seen his work on a mural. From there the business took off, not only for New Orleans parades, but other cities, as well as Universal Studios and others.



Housed in a 300,000 square foot warehouse along the Mississippi River, the company produces amazing props.



It is here they come up with the idea, and with some creative construction methods, build their visions.



Today most are made out of Styrofoam, covered in paper mache.



From this base, and with talented artists they complete the huge pieces.




The final floats are massive. Because the Mardi Gras parades can last hours they even have porta potties hidden in the middle as the float participants can be on them for 5 hours +.



Below are some examples of their finest work.



































Mardi Gras World is a fantastic photo op.






Columbus – March 2019 – St Patrick’s Day Parade

Do you know where I can find a parade?




Just follow St Patrick, and his snake shaped staff.





The annual St Patrick’s Day Parade was in downtown Columbus.




It included (I think) the flags of all the counties in Ireland.





The Irishman of the Year – I think the dog should be the winner.





The ‘official leprechaun’??? Love to see that on a CV/Resume.





They dyed the horses legs and tail green!





While most of the marchers were from the Shamrock Club of Columbus, they had a few others including these youth Irish dancers (from Columbus – not Ireland).





There were a few cool costumes.





A couple of antique fire trucks.









The Columbus Police & Fire Department Pipes and Drums were the best musicians in the group.





And with that the parade was over. Sorry Irish – the Slovenians in Cleveland had a much livelier parade (and I have neither heritage so it is an unbiased opinion)