Out Wickenburg Way

I….love a parade, the sound of the horns, the sound of the drums, the sound of the…horses, in this case.  Welcome to Gold Rush Days in Wickenburg,Arizona.  Tons of people crowding the streets in old town Wickenburg, the way out west, average age – 65.  I saw about eight kids total, no candy being thrown at this parade, they should have thrown Geritol instead. (Do they still even make Geritol?)

Really though, the parade was great, lots and lots of horses, some being ridden, others drawing stage coaches and wagons.  There were a number of large groups of riders that could have been riding in to town to scare the women and children, all were having a great time.  I thought the ladies in front of me were going to roll on the ground laughing when one old cowboy rode up to them and hollar’d “how de do, ma’am?”

I’ve seen a lot of parades in my time, and thought I had seen it all.  But now, I can say I have – I saw, not one, but two groups of over 65 year old Pom Pom groups.  I didn’t know such a thing existed.  But then, I don’t usually spend my winters in Arizona.  These ladies were spry and active, I wish I looked so good in a cheerleading outfit!

Gold Rush Days is a huge celebration, tons of people come over for the long weekend, there is a great big art show, a carnival, a rodeo and the Melodrama.  Something for everyone here.  Over 80 entries in the parade, thousands of people at the rodeo.  Parking is a zoo, so you have to plan ahead, but fortunately, Wickenburg isn’t that large and walking is easy.

The silliest sight I saw today was the “No Fishing” sign over the Hassayampa River.  Hassayampa means “river that runs upside down” in Apache.  From my perspective, they should change that to whatever Apache word means “dry.”  I’m sure at other times of year the No Fishing sign makes sense, but February is not one of those.

And if you are looking for other things to do in Wickenburg, consider these.  Dude ranching, gold panning, theater, mining, museums and don’t forget the fishing!

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