Guavaween celebrates the big 2-5 this year with its annual Mama Guava Stumble Parade — and drunken revelry in general. This year's theme is Alice in Wonderland, so expect to see a lot of Alices and Mad Hatters walking the streets. Last year's ban on motorized parade floats remains in effect, but organizers promise a quirky cast of characters to keep partygoers happy and heavy with beads. In honor of Guavaween's silver anniversary, here are 25 reasons to like Tampa's wildest Halloween party, even if you prefer to enjoy it from afar. — Susan Thurston email@example.com.
1 It always happens on a Saturday (unlike Halloween, which falls on Sunday this year, a school night).
2 You get to see a horrified look on your mom's face when you tell her you saw the Genitorturers.
3 The $17 admission keeps away a lot of cheap troublemakers.
4 You get even more beads to add to the worthless collection taking up space in your closet.
5 Proceeds help the Ybor City Chamber of Commerce attract tourists and their money, which is good because locals don't have any.
6 The extra security makes Ybor seem safe and orderly.
7 All the political costumes remind you to find out who's running for election.
8 You can slip singles into the underwear of guys dancing on the bar at G.Bar and no one will recognize you in your costume.
9 You're encouraged to stumble. (It's the name of the parade.)
10 You can boost your annual income by winning $2,000 in the costume contest, which beats working.
11 You can check out that nightclub you've been wanting to try because most offer free cover.
12 You won't feel out of place at The Castle in your costume.
13 You can ponder the sobriety of organizers who said Mama Guava is the daughter of Jose Gaspar and a palmetto tree.
14 You can point at people — and their costumes — and not get beat up.
15 Smoking a cigar in public is culturally acceptable.
16 You can debate with your friends what a guava actually looks like.
17 Krewe members jonesing for Gasparilla get a three-month-early warm-up.
18 You can dress like a hooker and call it your costume.
19 You can indulge in a Green Guava at Bernini's, a cocktail made with Midori, Finlandia vodka and guava juice.
20 Baring breasts is considered merely naughty, not disgusting.
21 Every year has a theme, which, for the not-so-creative, makes coming up with a costume a little easier.
22 You're encouraged to make a political statement, and you don't have to list it as a campaign contribution.
23 Some of the costumes are so good, you'll want to post photos on Facebook.
24 You finally have a good reason to ride the streetcar.
25 You can drink beer in the street all night and say it's for charity's sake.