Every year October 31 is “Nevada Day”, the anniversary of the day in 1864 when Abraham Lincoln signed Nevada into statehood. In 1938 they started giving a parade in Carson City on the 31st, and it’s become a yearly tradition since then. The celebration has expanded in the ensuing years to include a carnival, fireworks, a music festival, and a bunch of other festivities.
For years Nevada Day was always celebrated on the 31st, no matter which day of the week it fell on. And since that’s also Halloween, trick or treating was always done on October 30th. But a few years ago they moved the celebration from the 31st to the last Saturday in October, creating a three-day weekend.
In 2004 the parade was held on Saturday, October 30th. Here are two pages of photos of the parade, and a page from the carnival and the fireworks that evening.
The parade started out with the Highway Patrol leading the way.
And then: Bagpipes!
Car 54, Where Are You?
The SWAT team was on the scene. Hopefully this was part of the parade.
Senator Harry Reid was up for re-election this year. Apparently his tactic was to weigh down the fire truck with so many campaign signs that you couldn’t see anybody’s face.
It’s Plunger Man! Along with his sidekicks Hoedown Sally and The Dark Ninja, he keeps the world safe from clogged toilets and overflowing septics.
The Wooster High School JROTC carries the flag down Carson Street.
And the rest of the Wooster High JROTC marches along behind. Looks like the whole school is in the program.
There’s Mayor Ray on the stagecoach. Mayor Ray was up for re-election too. Three days after the parade he was voted out. See ya, Mayor Ray.
The Carson High Band.
MacGruff tries not to fall out of the PT Cruiser and take a bite out of the asphalt.
The Friends of the Silver Saddle Ranch tried to drive their tractors down the street without having them break down.
And this old truck went chugging behind.
Glenn Lucky rides along on his new bicycle. Glenn has cerebral palsy, but he rides that bike miles and miles each and every day. Some days he’s hauling a trailer full of advertising placards, but even on his days off you still see him all over town.
The Scarlet Ladies of the Red Hat Society.
DARE gets all the old cars.
The Douglas High marching band, with their leader “Z” walking alongside.
ComputerCorps and “Area 52”, which is supposed to be…I’m not really sure what.
The crowd wonders how much longer the parade is going to go on, as it seems to stretch off into infinity.
Pat Morita, from the Karate Kid, was on hand with Hugh Hefner’s brother to promote a home for retired Playboy Bunnies, or something like that.
One of the Burning Man cars.
More Burning Man. Since other floats had people throwing out candy, why couldn’t the Burning Man people be tossing out packets of Ecstasy?
The swinging ship.
Ferris wheel. The inventor of the Ferris wheel grew up in Carson City watching the water wheels down on the river, and imagined what it would be like to ride on one of the buckets. So, this is like the Ferris wheel coming home.
A basic spin n’ puke.
A look back at the carnival.
The kiddie coaster.
Another look back.
Full parade lineup from the Nevada Appeal.
The state photographer’s Nevada Day pictures.