PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — With only hours remaining until the annual Mummers strut down Broad Street, fancies, comics and string bands spent their last day before the big show rehearsing — and bracing for the extreme cold.
Dressed in silver, with emerald, ruby and sapphire gem-like accessories, The South Philly String Band is ready for the parade and the freezing temperatures.
“[Wear] as much clothes as you can get under there,” said Marshal Joe Moran, who’s been strutting for more than 60 years. He says a major concern for string bands is frozen horns.
“When you blow into a saxophone or any other brass instrument, your saliva gets down into the horn and gets into the pads and everything in there,” Moran said. “And then in freezing weather, it’s actually going to freeze.”
One remedy is a special balm them make for the brass pads.
“We put a little special stuff on it to stop it from freezing,” Moran explained.
“You blow as much as you can to keep the horns blowing, to keep the air going through the horns,” he said, “so the longer you sit there and wait with the horns, it has a tendency to freeze up.”
Moran says with layers, plenty of hot chocolate and the secret balm, the Mummers should be well situated to deal with the freezing weather.