This was a huge parade, lasting almost three hours. It was easily the highlight of the trip for me. All the different costumes are amazing (and apparently very expensive, figures in the thousands were bandied around). They parade as groups through the streets. The groups usually have a theme, and almost everyone is wearing an elaborately carved mask. These masks were amazing.
Words really can't do it justice so I'm going to post a couple of videos.
|These guys were a hoot. There was a good group of them.|
|Prominent citizens, presumably. They certainly look important.|
|The costumes and masks ranged from funny, to more frightening.|
|So many different varieties.|
Each group would be based on a certain theme, but they were all subtly different, too. I'm sure if I knew German (or Swabian, more likely) folklore I would know who a lot of the costumes were supposed to represent. Some were obvious, like the wolves, one of my favorites.
|A group of Plätzler. This was the most common costume type.|
|Ever heard of being run out of town on a rail? This is what it looks like, at least with the people doing it are very concerned for your safety.|
|The Viking Warchief. Obviously.|
|Here's a nice close-up of a mask. The masks were cool because with them and the mostly very elaborate costumes, you couldn't tell who was male and who female.|
The parade was amazing and as I said the high point of the trip. More on Weingarten later.