WHEN you see Bananaman, a wizard and Elvis doing the Conga you know it is going to be a surreal day.
The Stanley fans had got their fancy dress gear on to cheer on the Reds to what they hoped was a final day win and therefore their best points tally since their return to the Football League three seasons ago.
Unfortunately it didn’t turn out like that in a strange Gigg Lane encounter.
The Reds were awarded a penalty which is a rarity in itself - as they have only had five this season.
Mind you, three of them have come against Bury.
However the Reds have lacked the killer touch on spot kicks and captain Peter Cavanagh made it four out of the five missed for the season.
Then the game, which Bury needed to win in a bid to clinch last ditch automatic promotion, looked like it would peter out into a goalless draw.
However, you can always expect the unexpected with Stanley and a controversial penalty, this time for Bury, was the deciding factor.
It’s nothing odd for the Reds to have a penalty given against them. 10 have been fired at Kenny Arthur this season and nine have been scored.
But it was a debatable one which left a sour taste for the Stanley managment at the end of what has been a troubled season.
With two minutes of injury time on the clock out of five, Bury needed a victory by two clear goals to go straight up with Wycombe and Exeter in the driving seat.
Then a ball in to the box saw Shakers skipper Ben Futcher and Andy Procter jumping for it almost on the goalline with arms outstretched.
It was hard to see at first but television replays showed that Procter’s hand did touch the ball.
The Bury players appealed, play stopped and there was then a bemusing few minutes while ex-Premier man in the middle Andy D’ Urso went to consult his assistant who was flagging.
No one quite knew what was going on but the ref then showed a red card to Procter and pointed to the spot.
Sub Phil Jevons sent Arthur the wrong way and then followed a bizarre pitch invasion by some of the Gigg Lane fans who thought the Shakers were up.
Little did they realise, they were hampering their own side’s promotions chances by wasting time when they needed a vital second goal.
The fans were eventually cleared and soon after the final whistle blew to end the season in a somewhat muted fashion for Stanley, who finished one point behind their points tally from last season but one place higher in 16th spot.
Reds boss John Coleman couldn’t hide his frustration and was so distraught that he felt unable to go over and applaud the Stanley fans who, while in fancy dress and boisterous mood, had also held up a banner hailing Coleman's 10 years at the club.
"I would just like to apologise for not going up to the fans at the end," he said.
"I was so upset after the game so I say sorry for not going and giving them a clap as they were magnificent and it was a great gesture with the banners."
A unpredictable end indeed to a season - and to a game which never quite lifted until the final minutes.
Bury, in fourth spot, looked nervy and their regular hitmen of Andy Bishop and Glynn Hurst didn’t have their scoring boots on.
Stanley, meanwhile, were solid in defence but did lack the creativity with widemen Bobby Grant and Sean McConville not seeing enough of the ball and John Miles and Craig Lindfield unable to find the breakthrough.
Midfielders Procter and Jimmy Ryan got forward when they could but keeper Wayne Brown, a keen photographer, could have taken a few snap shots as he didn’t have that much to do.
But that was until sub Chris Turner, with his first touch on 58 minutes, ran for a loose ball, Brown came out and looked like he had got something on the ball but also took the Accrington teenager.
D'Urso pointed to the spot much to the horror of the 7,000 Bury fans with a large group charging behind the goal to try and put the spot kick taker off.
Procter, John Mullin and loanee Jamie Clarke have all taken penalties this season so it was something of a surprise when captain Cavanagh grabbed the ball.
There were nerves as he had to adjust it and then he had Brown beaten but his ball crashed against the crossbar and out.
What Stanley really need next season, is a regular penalty taker.
Still there wasn’t anything in it until the final flurry when Bury scored theirs and took the three points.
Coleman said: "We would like to think we could hit the target from 12 yards but their lad has hit their one well but I feel very harshly done by in a couple of areas.
"The fact we could get three players booked when we haven’t made a bad tackle in the whole game and they have not had one player booked.
"Then you don’t get off-sides that are off-sides and you don’t get a foul when it is a foul.
"Yet we managed to get a handball given from a linesman who is 40 yards away through a ruck of players and a post and a referee who was six yards away and deemed it was okay and played on.
"Unfortunately for us, it is not the first time we have been on the end of some of those decisions by that particular linesman."
That aside he could take some heart from the higher placed finish and the battle with the League One hopefuls.
He added: "I thought we were the better team in the second half apart from the last 10 minutes and I don't see a great deal of difference between them.
"If you landed from Buenos Aires today you wouldn't think that they were fourth in the league and we were in 16th."
But you would think Stanley fans dressed strangely!