Monday, November 01, 2010

The Gustine Festa

This year, the Ralls girls invited us to join them for the Cow Parade in Gustine, one of the events held during the Our Lady of Miracles Festa (fesh-ta). How could we miss out on a parade... especially one that has cows?! So, we loaded up the kids and were on our way.
Mike had to stay home and work, so it was Stephanie & I vs. the 5 little ones! Whew...
The parade began with the color guard... and then followed by cart after cart of milk cans pulled by goats...
little bulls...
and bigger bulls. The carts were made of solid wood, I'm sure many of them are generations upon generations old... others appeared more recent. The wooden gears in the wheels made loud squeaking and groaning as they were pulled up the street towards the church.
Some carts were plain, others were more elaborately decorated with flowers, vines, flags, sparkles, you name it.
We even got to see Stephanie's dad, Tony (above), with his Red Holstein bulls, pulling his cart in the parade!

There was also a procession of Holstein cows without carts.
Loving their time with the Ralls girls!

During the parade, there were ladies passing out Portuguese Sweet Bread rolls! Yum! The kids, who were ready for lunch anyway, loved them! So much for Steph and I getting ours!
There were many statues of saints carried during the procession. Manuel Pires was helping carry this one.
And of course, no Portuguese parade is complete without the Queens! Clayton was in awe!
Aside from being so warm, it was a great day and the kids were ready for lunch and naps when we left. We will be back next year, with a couple of chairs to set up in a shady spot! Thanks for inviting us, Stephanie!


The Wife of a Dairyman said...

Now THAT is a car load of little kiddos! I've only been to the Gustine Festa once, when I was a little girl. It seemed so big compared to the ones we have up here:) Fun day!

The Durrer Family said...

Hi, Nancy!
It was a blast, and so much fun to think back to the parade heading down B Street in Petaluma when we were kids. My sister was a sidemaid for the littlest princess when she was about 5 or so! Pretty good for Zero Portuguese in our family! :)