37th annual Fair bathed in sun and good cheer
It was a cloudy start to Sunday but even Mother Nature sensed today was special and the sun emerged as the Willy Street Fair Parade prepared to launch. As it circled through the nine block route in the Marquette neighborhood, the phalanx of fun proved to be one of the largest by way of participants.
Three marching bands at the beginning, middle and end, punctuated appearances by the familiar: stilt walkers, Hoopelation, the circus wheel and the Forward Marching Band; along with new entrants like the Madison Circus Space and the Mustache Beard Wearers Union: Local 608.
Down on Willy Street the thoroughfare filled quickly as temperatures in the middle 60s and possibly a late-afternoon Green Bay Packer kickoff brought people out early. Over 150 vendors filled the curb spaces and the larger presence was notable. The food offerings were diverse and plentiful but the retail booths did not break much new ground.
The many music stages catered to various interests and were popular. As part of the World Music Festival this weekend, many groups made a stop at the Fair. Sunday was Latin Music day and a strong lineup kept the mood light and free. The day came to a swinging conclusion as Madisalsa played almost a two-hour set. The popular local salsa band even helped keep the audience updated on the score of the Packer game.
Ending the day at the Kids Stage was Take The King, a group of high school students (Charles Donovan, Van Tetzner, Galen Austin, Jens Shager) that showed some promising talent, playing their self-described version of Post-Hardcore, Hard Rock, Post-Grunge, Punk Rock loud and strong. The group even garnered an encore from a large gathering of supporters. See below for pictures of King as well as other pictures and videos of many of the sights and sounds of the 2014 Willy Street Fair