June 21, 2009
Saturday was the day of the Solstice Parade, and it seemed rather quiet on State Street. There appeared to be a smaller crowd gathering in the parade's staging area, and there were large gaps of silent reflection in the parade itself. The mayor, in her last parade as the ruler of the City, wore sensible shoes. Many spectators were seen leaving early. And there were fewer beating drums than in recent years.
How do we know there were fewer drums? Well, because the dedicated staff of edhat.com has been counting the drums and the drummers in the annual Solstice Parade since 2005. This year, there were 82 individual drums being played by 73 drummers. That's a 27% drop in drums from last year, and a 41% decline from the all-time high in 2007, when 140 drums hammered out the State Street Beat.
Of course, we all remember the drum drought of 2005. That was a lean year with only 44 drums. 82 drums in the parade would have been cause for dancing in the street!
Edhat subscribers must be a little rusty in their count estimation skills. The average guess in yesterday's contest was a whopping 220 drums! On Saturday, subscriber Elkay was a drum that could not be beat. Her guess of 77 drums was the closest guess of all. Elkay snags (snares?) an Edhat t-shirt.
At the parade, we took 156 pictures of the drum and games of the Solstice Parade.
Click here to see an updated graph showing all of the Edhat parade counts.
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