Clear skies and a rainbow for Bellingham’s Procession of the Species

Nary a cloud could be seen in the sky on Saturday, May 2, so the rainbow that appeared at the end of the 12th annual Procession of the Species parade had nothing to do with rain.

Loving Space School for preschoolers and kindergartners capped the parade with its trademark human rainbow, with students and parents dressed in colors across the spectrum, from red to violet.

Entrants went to lengths short and great for the popular parade, which allows people to dress up as animals in a safe, commercial-free environment. (Words, either written or spoken, aren’t allowed.) One man donned a reindeer-antler headpiece; another group came out with a giant, twirling owl.

The parade started at the Bellingham Public Library and ended at Maritime Heritage Park.

The Procession of the Species, following an event by the same name in Olympia, started in Bellingham as a way to celebrate the city’s centennial.

“It was felt that a creative, community-building parade that honored the special environment and natural world would be a reflection of our city’s history,” longtime organizer Carol Oberton said in a 2014 interview.