hubbub club

Occidental Fools Parade

Tomorrow is Fool’s Day of course. But you’ll have to wait til next Saturday to celebrate Occidental-style with the annual Fools Parade. This is some of the best sketching of the year with many of the townspeople dressing up as the fools (I am sure they are not) and parading down the main street of town, accompanied by the Hubbub Club marching band and lots more foolery.


Whether or not you want to dress up as some kind of fool and march in the parade, or just come and gawk and sketch, you are invited to join me and others for a sketch meet up. Here’s the details:


Join in the fun of this whimsical tradition where families in this picturesque town in the redwoods dress up as “fools” and parade their silly way down the main street in town, ending at Occidental Center for the Arts.  Experience extreme frivolity, bands, music, crowning of the King and Queen of Fools, Lunapillar rides and more!

Meet at noon in the parking lot of the Occidental Community Center to sketch people getting ready for the parade, which starts at 1pm. Walk in the parade while sketching, or sit on the street and watch. To sketch people in costume, there’s no better setting. (Some sketchers will be in costume too.)

The Hubbub Club band will provide live music, and there will be food of course. It’s all totally foolish and fun. What better excuse do you need to get out of the city and go exploring in Sonoma county?

There are people to direct traffic and help with parking nearby.

I will be there in my tutu at noon and later walking in the parade. We can meet back in the same parking lot of the Community Center after the parade to see presentations by Zero the Clown and others on the Podium of Impossibility and share sketches after that, around 2:30 or 3 behind the Community Center where the bleachers are.

See sketches from an earlier year’s parade here 

Meet you there?! Contact me if you have questions.


Fool’s Day Parade


Faber Castell Pitt Artist pen, brush pen and w/c in 8 X 5″ handmade sketchbook (BFK Rives paper)

I ventured out with two other sketch-loving-fools. Carole and Suzanne, to capture the Fools Day Parade action in Occidental on Saturday and try to crack the code of how to sketch a parade while everything/one is in movement.

Two of us situated ourselves at a picnic table bench outside a corner store and right behind these four fools in wigs while waiting for the parade to begin.  They were actually relatively still or at least would return to a pose frequently.  The blue and the pink wigs required special paint which was added later – Daniel Smith’s Electric Blue and Holbein’s Opera.


And finally the parade, which consists of the town’s folk in fool costume (a quirky version of Halloween) walking down the street to the music of the Hubbub Club musicians.  They were momentarily held up long enough for me to sketch Snow White. I spotted our third sketcher, Carole, standing in the middle of the street, oblivious to traffic, sketching madly. . .and rescued her!


Now we’re standing up in the crowd waiting for the “coronation” of two children as King and Queen of Fools (for 5 min.) by the grand wizard.


Accompanied by His Imperial Nothingness clown, who was also holding his accordian, which I didn’t have time to sketch. . .


A fool eating lunch and enjoying the open mic concert in the Arts Center.  By this point the marine winds were blowing through town and we were grateful to sit down inside to sketch some more and put some paint on the sketches while listening to local talent.