The Healdsburg Future Farmers Twilight Parade happens on the Thursday before Memorial Weekend and every year the whole town shows up to mingle, nibble, and share a bottle of wine with a neighbor.Â This year was no exception as a huge number of people crowded the downtown area. This is serious for locals. Serious fun, that is. On the day of the parade, lawn chairs start appearing as early as six am to stake claim to the most desirable places to view the show. Throughout the day, vintage cars and trucks carrying livestock and partially assembled floats can be seen whizzing around town showing off and preparing for the evening’s event.
This year my wife and I chose the easy way out and instead of claiming our turf earlier in the day with lawn chairs, we went to a friend’s house who lives on the street where the parade passes by. This is a great opportunity because not only do we not have to worry about finding a good placeÂ to sit but we are also invited to share in a pot luck and surrounded by great company. At 6 pm the fun begins as jazz bands, floats, pet parades, jugglers, acrobats, and oh yeah, veiled women on horseback make their way through the city streets to the cheers and roar of theÂ crowds.
After nibbling on sausages, meatballs, fruit, cheese, and crackers I reached for my art supplies so I could do what a sketch artist does, draw. But a lack of still objects made the event difficult to capture on paper. I attempted several drawings only to have the subject move shortly after I had started. Then a string of similar vintage cars made their way through the parade and I added a little more to my drawing as each vehicle passed by. After I finally completed a drawing, I decided to rejoin the group and get a glass of my friend’s homemade wine, Barking Dog Petite Sirah.