Pasadena Belly Dancer Named Queen of 2014 Doo Dah Parade

Local belly dancer will reign over this year's parade

Published : Sunday, May 25, 2014 | 9:16 PM

Nancy Urbach exults after being crowned Queen of the 2014 Doo Dah Parade after try-outs on Sunday, May 25, 2014.

Emerging victorious from a raucous and exhausting campaign season that lasted much of the afternoon, professional belly dancer Nancy Urbach was named the Queen of the 2014 Pasadena Doo Dah parade early Sunday evening.

The parade, now in its 37th occasional year, held auditions at a packed American Legion Hall in an inspirational blend of mild debauchery, alcohol and loud music.

“It’s incredible. It’s like a dream come true,” said Urbach, now crowned Queen Nancy, who has been auditioning for the role since 2002.

“I’m just so happy and so excited,” she added.

Altadena resident Clara “Freedom 911″ Long was named first runner-up. It was the first attempt for Long, who has never seen the parade in person. Second runner-up “Count Smokula” was unavailable for comment after the announcement as he was busy accompanying the band on accordion.

20 candidates, both male and female, auditioned for the role of the queen, the most ever, said Tom Coston, who has managed the parade since 1995. Nearly 50 judges, who qualified for the positions by buying beer for Coston and his friends, scrutinized the contestants, who ranged from a 6-foot 4-inch tall transvestite who brought the crowd to its clumsy feet with a surf guitar medley to a burka-wearing gentleman from “Assisgrassistan.”

Other highlights included “The Swami from El Monte” who hypnotized and then pierced a live balloon, causing no apparent damage, and an acapella version of the Runaways “Cherry Bomb.”

The first Doo Dah Parade was held on January 1, 1978, as a tongue-in-cheek protest against the Rose Parade. It has been held sporadically ever since.

2013-14 Doo Dah Queen Susanna Edmonds helped judge this year’s participants, saying afterward, “If I wasn’t a pretty girl, I would have been a scientist.”

This year’s Doo Dah Parade will be held on November 15, 2014, in a circular pattern near Colorado Boulevard.  For more visit www.pasadenadoodahparade.info.