We're not big Fiesta goers. We tend to steer away from the big crowds associated with Fiesta. Having been born and raised in SA I've been to enough Fiesta events over the years to get it. The events I make an except to my rule of avoiding crowds are the parades....not the River parade but the day and the night parades. We usually try to make it to at least one of the Fiesta parades and since we moved to Dignowity 5 years ago we've developed our own approach to watching the parades, actually we sort of become part of the parades.
Three years ago we decided that instead of sitting down to watch the parades we would get to the parade route early to walk up the route to the staging area where the parades begin. This is easy enough for us because the parade route is literally 7 blocks from our front porch so we save the headache of trying to find parking by taking a stroll down the hill from our house.
This year we got to the parade route shortly after the vanguard of the parade had started down Broadway but no matter we were able to wind our way along the sidewalks toward the staging area on Grayson Street. The staging area is near the Pearl complex and it is literally located underneath the overpasses of US 28. This creates a great collection point of sound and organized chaos as the bands warm up, the floats are lined up, people milling around and you get to see all the local politicians, Fiesta Royalty and assorted characters. The highlight of this year's venture into Fiesta land was almost getting arrested by one of SA's finest for being being in the wrong place at the right time. Actually, I don't think he was going to arrest us but the cop certainly got annoyed with us!
In end we covered over 3 miles of walking along the parade route, we met some really cool folks and enjoyed our little piece Fiesta!
Scenes from our stroll along the Battle of Flowers Parade route and staging area: