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The Golden Dragon Parade 2009: Dragons, Beauty Queens, and Brass Bands

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Photos by Ian Dickson and Molly Bergen for the LAist.

The dragons descended down upon Chinatown yesterday and drove out all the bad spirits. Saturday January, 31st marked the 110th annual Golden Dragon Parade. It is held every year in celebration of the Chinese New Year and draws over 100,000 people. This year was no different.

The parade was packed with dragons of every size shape and color. Giant dragons that were held by twenty people and baby dragons whose feet had grown weary and had to rest on dad's shoulders. There were beauty queens from every town within Los Angeles atop floats in glittering dresses and clear high heels. There were more marching bands then you could ever dream of decked out in all the hues of the rainbow. The poor kids looked like they were melting under all their heavy uniforms in the 80 degree weather.

There were martial arts studios with little kids who did high kicks, and adults who knew their way around a sword and did some very fancy jumps of their own. And of course there was the traditional politicians in fancy cars. I have included the politician in the nicest car I saw. I'm not sure where that parade tradition came from, but it seems pretty silly to me. After three hours of floats, music, and dancing the parade came to a close with firecrackers under the giant dragon arches at Broadway and Cesar Chavez Blvd.

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Gung Hay Fat Choy! Happy 4707!