Monday, January 26, 2009

2009 GASPARILLA Season Begins!

Saturday was the official start of the 2009 Gasparilla Season here in its 105th year, its hard to believe, this will be my 21st. A month and half of events(Extravaganza, Invasion and Pirate Fest, Night Parade, Distance Classic, Intl Film Festival, Outbound Voyage, and Festival of the Arts)

I took the bike up to a buddies house near Hyde Park, and we biked along the Bayshore Blvd to visit some friends that were in Krewe's and setting up, getting ready for the Children's Parade. The afternoon was perfect...about 70 degrees and clear blue skies....there were 107 floats for this years Children's Parade, which always takes place the week before the main Invasion and Parade(for the adults). The historic Bayshore Blvd was closed for all 6 miles, and what a crowd there was this year...after chatting it up with our friends in the different Krewe's, we headed back home, and let the kids enjoy this one...

The evening I was back on Bayshore with a few friends, to watch the Mock Pirate Battle and Night Air Show, then the 25 minute display of Fireworks...which seem to get bigger and better every year. Afterwards we visited some friends over in Davis Islands neighborhood near downtown, and had some dinner at 220 East along the Davis Island Boulevard. Even at 930, the restaurant was busy, ive never had a bad meal here, very home style, steaks, chicken and seafood, burgers and sandwich's and pasta...we started with a bottle of Italian Pinto Grigio, priced just right, and tasty...and chowed down on a Portabella Mushroom Cheese burger, a Cheeseburger, and Chicken Pasta Alfredo....the burgers were very big, and on fresh Italian Sub Roll, the pasta portion was huge, and very tasty...we were too full to finish the bottle of wine, but was reminded by the very friendly server that we are now allowed to take home the unfinished bottle to enjoy at we did just that.

Meetings this week take me to.....New Tampa...not a bad journey. The city is really gearing up for SuperBowl coming up this Sunday, you can already tell that its busier, lots of events are taking place...but this upcoming weekend will be most exciting with all the concerts, events and festivals that eventually lead to the big day...SuperBowl Sunday!


Denis A. Baldwin said...

I ended up going to the children's parade this last weekend, and got a bunch of pictures:

I can't wait until the night parade! It's going to be so much fun.

Anonymous said...

Gasparilla: The seedy side; tons of other people's garbage in my front yard this morning that the city is NOT going to clean up (beer cans, beer bottles, food packages, broken beads), couldn't leave my own house (by car) from 10 AM to 8 PM because of traffic and closures, I spotted two people (how many did I NOT see?!) peeing on my back fence yesterday, I actually asked one guy while he was peeing why he didn't use one of the tons of port-a-jons on Bayshore, he said they were too far to walk to, he didn't seem to mind that he was urinating right in front of me on my fence (OK, I'm female, shouldn't it matter?!!). NOT FAIR!! Its almost not fun anymore, I just dread it. The people who live right off Bayshore have their roads blocked off or have the money to hire security guards but us poor suckers that live much further down take the brunt of party-goer traffic. The tbt newspaper said to take pictures of such things and email them to a certain email address, maybe someone can come up with some solutions to make Gasparilla fun without some of the bad things. Signed, Gasparilla Victim!