The Polar Queen's warriors and bears hauled Meare's Masqueraders CC to the top of the open feature class at Bridgwater Carnival with the glam rockers and burlesque girls of Globe CC from Wells snapping at their heels in second place.
Roaring, smoking cannons, and a cauldron shooting fire high into the night helped Gremlins Carnival Club capture Bridgwater Carnival's local championship again.
Every cart and every masquerader was a star, from the brilliantly realised skeletons and giant serpents of Ramblers CC's Adventures of Ali Baba, to Huckyduck's gigantic elephants bringing Hannibal's fight with Rome to vivid life.
One of the most evocative was Griffens' Dickens' Christmas, a breathtaking realisation of the great novelist's characters, in which a terrifying giant Scrooge loomed large and delicate flurries of snow drifted out towards the crowd.
Thousands poured into the town and organisers believe the change of date to a Saturday has been a boost to an event which is already the biggest of its kind in Europe.
The squibbing finale saw 165 carnival club members lined up in the High Street holding aloft the giant fireworks which shot fountains of gold into the night.
Inside your eight-page carnival special, you will find exclusive pictures from Bridgwater Carnival as well as reports about the what mid Somerset clubs have been creating for the 2012 carnival season.
See our full coverage over the next two weeks for the best carnival pictures and reports.