Simanaitis Says

On cars, old, new and future; science & technology; vintage airplanes, computer flight simulation of them; Sherlockiana; our English language; travel; and other stuff


ELVIS IMPERSONATORS, including some more than 10-ft. tall, got All Shook Up at the 18th Annual Elvis Festival in Garden Grove, California, this past Sunday, August 27, 2017. And the crowd there shared A Big Hunk O’Love. On a personal note, my grandkids, not exactly in the Elvis demographic, had a grand time as well as Good Luck Charm in the event’s Elvis Bingo.

Garden Grove closed off its historical Main Street for the event that included an Elvis-worthy Cadillac car show, all sporting real steel and several resplendent with permanent glitter.

Four stilt-walkers towered over the crowd. I asked the 10-ft.-tall Elvis how long it took to learn this skill; the confident response: “No time at all, babe. You hop on, and you’re okay!”

Above (and I mean above!), the King; both he and Priscilla worked the crowd from on high. Below: “Gee, you’re taller than your picture….”

Booths lining Main Street offered lots of neat stuff for Elvis fans, including wonderful geegaws, T-shirts, and tote bags. Other booths had high art in several languages. Sorry, fans, I didn’t see any of the famed Elvis-with-the-tear on black velvet. On the other hand, I got there a couple hours after opening, so perhaps too late.

The Blue Suede Shoes of California Elvis Fan Club shared their dedication to The King with tote bags, handy for carrying the day’s accumulated memorabilia and gifts.

This Elvis is also taller than life.

Elvis impersonators led the crowd in sing-alongs (and also gave us some shade and a place to rest up a bit). In fact, there were intergenerational expressions of Elvis enthusiasm everywhere. And, I suspect, a run on black hair dye last week in Orange County, California.

August 16, 2017, was the 40th anniversary of Elvis’s passing, so it’s no wonder that a lot of the kids in attendance weren’t familiar with The King. My grandkids Lily and Carter were clued in by Daughters Suz and Beth, their mom.

Auntie Suz reports what occurred: “My nephew and niece sure cleaned up at Elvis Bingo, winning two of the four rounds, including the suspenseful final blackout round!”

Grandson Carter and his winnings. Granddaughter Lily scored a classy T-shirt.

Continues Daughter Suz, “We are now the very proud owners of a set of Elvis tumblers and a dramatic yet tasteful Elvis T-shirt. #proudauntie #familyfundammit.”

Full disclosure on tasteful: Suz has two of the famed Elvis-with-the-tear-on-black-velvet portraits.

Azteca Restaurant & Lounge, Historic Main Street, Garden Grove, California. Photo by Denise S. from Elvis Festival Facebook page.

We celebrated a fine day and the grandkids’ good fortune with an excellent Mexican lunch at Azteca Restaurant, on Main Street and renowned for its tasteful decor of Elvis memorabilia. Or so Daughter Suz might describe it. ds

© Dennis Simanaitis,, 2017

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