Lion with twirlers before paradeDuring thev Parade 

       There-there -  Eastleigh Lion prepares for parade











If it's September once again, it's time for the ‘Mardi Gras' in Eastleigh and time for the Lions to do their ‘community service'. The highlight of the event, (which also comprises stalls, displays, and entertainment, surrounding the bandstand in the park) is the parade, led by the mayor through the streets of Eastleigh town centre.

The Lions provide ‘marshals', stationed at road junctions and crossings which have been closed to traffic for the parade.  This year we did something more! We are grateful to Lion Cliff who became one of the entries in the parade, dressed in an official Lion costume. Sadly Eastleigh Lions were not judged to be the parade winners but Lion Cliff, ably guarded by the Lions friend, Brenda, was regarded as a star of the show. He was also adopted by the ‘Twirlers' who danced just in front in the parade and provided with hugs and cuddles from several of the young girls in the crowd, who found our Lion irresistible. As you can see from the photos, he is rather cute, with a rather doleful expression, even though he is well over six feet tall when standing on his hind legs.

To say that Lion Cliff became hot under the collar during all his efforts is an understatement! Despite the cool weather (another understatement) he sweated gallons in the confines of the hot and very heavy suit.

Lion Cliff's efforts had at least one desirable affect, in that the ‘team' received a request for a donation from Eastleigh ‘first responders' who were on duty nearby and hopefully our website will be hit by spectators who fell in love with the Lion and found his ‘affiliation' from Brenda's Hi Viz Eastleigh Lions tabard and cap.  Whatever the outcome, Eastleigh Lions thoroughly enjoyed doing their ‘community service' and retired to Artisan's to discuss their ‘triumph' over a warming cup of coffee.
  Outside the Swan Centre

Many congratulations to Lion Cliff - who I can testify really was the ‘Man in the Lion mask'.

For more pictures visit the Echo website http://www.dailyecho.co.uk/photographs/news_galleries/mardigras/view/gallery_366086.Eastleigh_Mardi_Gras_Picture_Gallery/