Look Out! Look Out! Pink Lions on Parade!

From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. today, Lions Club International is presenting a Parade of Nations in downtown Seattle, as part of their annual international convention. Given the high of 80 degrees expected today, that should be more than enough time to roast the fairer-skinned to a healthy pink. And of course some Lions clubs wear pink proudly, like the Castro Lions Club and Queens Pride Lions Club.

(There are ten clubs filed under “Seattle,” but none seem to advertise gay-friendliness. Well, the Capitol Hill club does meet at Charlie’s.)

A volunteer service organization, the Lions do whatever is needed, but one focus is vision–literally: vision screenings, eye banks and eyeglass recycling.

Not all of the Lions will be in Seattle–there are 135 million in 45,000 clubs in 206 countries–but the 12,000 expected should do the trick when it comes to traffic congestion. SDOT tells you what to expect:

The parade, which will get underway at 10:00 a.m. and is expected to last until 3:00 p.m., starts on Denny Way at Fifth Avenue and travels south on Fifth to Pine Street where it terminates. Participants will disperse and then move east on Pine to the Convention Center on Seventh Avenue.

The following closures should be expected:

  • 7:00 a.m.- 3:00 p.m.
    Southbound Fifth Avenue from Mercer to Denny Way for staging
  • 9:45 a.m.- 3:00 p.m.:
    Parade route on Fifth Avenue from Denny Way to Pike Street
    Cross streets to Fifth Avenue (except for Metro/Sound Transit during parade)
    Pike Street from Fourth to Eighth avenues
    Sixth and Seventh avenues from Olive Way to Union Street

Metro and Sound Transit will have to reroute about 20 bus routes in the downtown core until 3 p.m. today, as well. You can check on rerouted buses here. If it seems like a hassle having all these Lions in town, the convention from July 4 to 8 is supposed to add $30 million to the local economy. Plus, as is the Lions way, the organization is donating hundreds of seedlings to our parks, and performing other community services.

The SunBreak says if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.