All Souls Procession wows once again – slide show and poem

Taking photos of Tucson’s annual All Souls Procession is like owning dogs or eating salted peanuts – you certainly can’t stop at just one.

Don’t fret, as I shan’t post all 195 photos I snapped of the event, but I will give you my top 40 as the phrase has a ring to it.

Yes, I’m a photo junkie. But it’s much healthier than heroin.

Enjoy. My beau and I certainly did. Now I have Monday off to recover from the festivities and staying up late to post these photos.


The procession kicked off at Epic Cafe, at Fourth Avenue and University Place, and culminated at the Franklin Street docks.

I ended up with only one photo of the Tucson Citizen newspaper gang, as I was too busy waving to all those Citizen folks I dearly miss – and getting a big hug from a dapperly yet deathly dressed Renee Schafer-Horton. She makes a cute corpse. Good job on the tribute, guys. I miss your laughter.



a cute corpse hugged

me on Sunday night as I

drank in the All Souls

Procession she left white

makeup on my chin and –

it was quite an honor to

connect with the souls of the

dead – who thrive on the

other side – where we’re

stripped down of flesh

blood and limb and –

left with what



-Ryn Gargulinski.11.2009


So, were you among the thousands who enjoyed the Sunday evening procession?

What was your favorite costume/outfit/puppet/sight?

Did you see the three legged dog?

What death would you or did you honor in the procession?


About Rynski

Writer, artist, performer who specializes in the weird, wacky and sometimes creepy. Learn more at
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34 Responses to All Souls Procession wows once again – slide show and poem

  1. radmax says:

    Mornin’ Rynski. Quite a show last night. I’d never been to this before, but ended up thoroughly enjoying the spectacle. My gal even coaxed me into joining the procession. Except for an evidently blind bike rider who almost rammed my date, pretty amazing.

    • Rynski says:

      mornin’ radmax. the procession is ALWAYS the thrill of thrills for me. and to even get hugged by a corpse!
      so cool you got coaxed into joining in and even more cool you found it amazing.
      sorry to hear about the near injury – i, too, saw a float going all willy-nilly – it was some dragon head – i even heard the person pushing it say ‘i can’t see where i’m going!’

      • radmax says:

        Haha! Probably the same one…I’m all for handicapped rights, but blind float drivers on crowded streets… 🙂

      • Rynski says:

        well, it certainly adds to the excitement, no? gets the adrenaline running when you see a giant dragon head about to bowl you over and smash you flat against fourth avenue – hahahhaaha.

  2. Jennatoolz says:

    Very cool, Rynski! I missed out! Next year, I’m so there!! 😛

    • Rynski says:

      hiya jennatoolz.
      i have to admit it was, and always is, torture getting me out of the house on sunday evening. but i had said i’d take some photos so i begrudgingly went…only to be so glad i did.
      hope you do make it next year. it’s my favorite tucson event, for sure.

  3. Carolyn Classen says:

    As I told Geoffrey Notkin in his Sunday blog on All Souls, I noticed the deceased Tucson Citizen’s entry with a coffin “Press Corpse” and Mark Kimble and other former employees holding the Citizen’s old banner.  I didn’t recognize you and vice versa, but then, no one recognized us (dos calaveras) anyway, even our friends. And what a huge crowd, maybe 20,000?

    • Rynski says:

      hi carolyn – yes, that was quite a crowd – glad you went and enjoyed. i was looking for you and your husband as i remember you mentioning you’d be there – but you’re right. it’s one big mystery fest and no one recognizes anyone. def. part of the allure.

  4. R V says:

    Slideshow seems broken…

  5. A.Farley says:

    We were there as past husband and wife, and I wanna see more snaps Ryn. That dog “Tripod” was cute.
    turnout 76th

    • Rynski says:

      dear turnout76,
      maybe i got a photo of you two! how cool. are you in the slide show?
      …but MORE photos??! eek! i met with my photo consultant and we decided even 40 might be too much for people to sit through. 195 would give folks carpal tunnel clicking the mouse on those arrow things.
      why does it seem three-legged dogs can run faster than their four-legged counterparts?

      • A.Farley says:

        Top hat and tails Groom and She wore the veil and Homage Umbrella. I sported the Cyrano red nose.
        yesterday schmucks

      • Rynski says:

        only top hat photos i got are of a tall white one that stood about 4 feet high and a striped black and white one with a cutesy skull. neither had red noses. poo.

  6. Ana says:

    Can u tell me why they didn’t get to the docks until like 8pm.  We waited 2 hours.  Was told it ended @ 8… Very disappointed children!  We left at 7:30 after my daughter slipped and fell & was tired and hungry from waiting so long.  Can you give me a more kid friendly plan?

    • Rynski says:

      hi ana,
      8 p.m. dock arrival was right on time. that’s the whole finale of the procession.
      sorry to hear you had disappointed kiddies. the best spots for early viewing are as close to the beginning as possible, at epic cafe. of course, it’s also the most crowded.
      maybe arrive early early next year to secure a good spot near the front – or even near the underpass where kids can press against the railings – but that would be about an hour or so into it.
      i do hope you don’t give up on the whole thing as it really is a fascinating experience.

  7. koreyk says:

    Hi Ryn,

    Did you get any good photos of the finale?  Mine turned out pretty crappy this year.

  8. Andrew Ulanowski says:


    Great pics and thank you for the poem (see our conversation at Brandi Fenton Park). My favorite caption was “Rhythm and Greens”, love it, love it!

    I was betrayed last night when the person who WAS going to pick me up to go, called to say they couldn’t go (which was a LIE) and then proceeded to go anyway, confessing only later that it was all a sham . . . how disappointed I am with them. I didn’t make it down there.

    honoring Farley the captcha is:
    wronged Gertrude (I really liked this one)

    • A.Farley says:

      gertrude was my goat that the neighbors ate and we have the same 1ST name, (Squeals).
      un blender

    • Rynski says:

      hiya andrew (aka wronged gertrude) –
      thanks for pics, captions and poem compliment! still have to check out some of your poetic endeavors (as per convo at BFP).
      i am so sad to hear you were left in the lurch – esp by someone pulling a sham! damn. we were looking for you as you had mentioned you’d be festivity-ing.
      next year!!

  9. azstargirl says:

    thanks for posting your beautiful photos ! i’ve been in Tucson almost 8 years and have never missed a procession yet. what a wonderful Tucson tradition

    • Rynski says:

      azstar girl –
      glad you enjoyed the photos and EXTRA GLAD to hear you are a die-hard all souls procession fan/attendee.
      i had to miss last year because i was ill – and was getting lazy this year…but so glad i tore myself from the cozy confines of my abode to join the fun.
      and fun it always is.

  10. Hi Ryn – I’m a close friend of Andrew’s.  I’m also in charge of collecting photos for the Batucaxe website (we were the Afro-Brazilian drum and dance troupe at the end of the parade).  Is there any chance you would be willing to share some of yours?  We would give you proper credit, of course!  I was playing a huge drum and couldn’t take any pix. 


    • Rynski says:

      hi maya,
      so cool you were part of the festivities – and as part of an awesome drum and dance toupe, to boot! andrew mentioned his dance and drumming friends and said what fun it all was.
      sure, you may use my photos with credit – if you really want to make me silly with glee you could even add a link to my website at
      feel free to cull from the pix above or you can e-mail me if you need any sent directly etc. my e-mail is:
      thanks for asking! and thanks for being a part of the coolest event in tucson.

      • Andrew Ulanowski says:

        Thanks Ryn! You’re the best! Maya is a great person and I love it when people I know get together on something.

      • Rynski says:

        my pleasure! a friend of yours is a friend of mine (unless you have crappy friends – haha). but i’m betting maya HAS to be cool if she’s part of the troupe.

    • Andrew Ulanowski says:

      hiya Maya! How nice to see you here! imagine my surprise . . .  🙂

  11. whoisgringo says:

    I had an amazing time.
    I am certain next year I will actually take part in procession.
    It was very beautifully done.

  12. Warren says:

    I enjoyed looking at your great pictures!   A very cool event, isn’t it?

  13. Ryn Gargulinski!!! I’m so glad we saw you – I’m sorry I left makeup on you, I was just so excited to see you there! I loved it!! Next year we should team up and make one of those giant head things!!! xoxoxo

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