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Home/2008 photos/Day of the Dead Procession [61]

San Francisco's anual Dia de los Muertos The San Francisco Day of the Dead Procession this year definitely had a different vibe than years past. In 2006 it rained and kept a lot of the crowds away. The year before it was a quieter affair. Last year, while it was a wild good time, the crowds (while seemingly big) were nothing. This year there was a really big crowd – much bigger than I have seen before. Perhaps this was because it was on a Sunday or perhaps it was because the weather has been so nice. In any case, I was really surprised to come around the corner and see the sheer number of people who had shown up. Also changed this year was the addition of a platform and PA system for the speakers. There was a bit more rambling on than usual, with some politics thrown in (this being the Presidential election year and all). But eventually the procession got started, and as it did the crowds started to spread out until the festivities covered many blocks of the Mission District. As every year, there were Aztec dancers, drum bands, people in costumes, and a few organized displays. This year saw the introduction of a big carriage as part of one of the groups’ displays. And as usual, my favorites were the bands with their festive music and revelers and their antithesis, the simple costumes worn by expressively morose festival-goers. On a technical note, this year was the first year that I forsook film and shot completely digital and as such, 2008 may prove to be the first year in which I don’t shoot a single roll of film since I started taking photos over 25 years ago.