78.5 F
Charlotte Amalie
Wednesday, February 21, 2024


Adults' Parade echoed the Carnival theme ‘Back in time for Carnival 1999' in many ways. Traditional Carnival Parade features were on the increase this year. The balance of steel bands versus amplified bands swung back towards the steel this parade.
A total of six pan bands went down the road, Pandemonium from Downstreet Youth, the St. Croix Central High School Pan Jamboree, the St. Thomas All Stars, V.I. Housing Authority Youth Steel Orchestra, and the Ivanna Eudora Kean Iguana Pan Jammers.
The showpiece of the steel bands was the Territorial Court Rising Stars. From the bright yellow dragon-head tow vehicle through three double decker pan trolleys filled with pan jammers in their new yellow and orange fire uniform shirts, to the dragon's tail support vehicle following, the Rising Stars would have been in contention for best float if they were not a band. Waves of pulsating pan music broadcasting from this bouncing yellow dragon made the Rising Stars a highlight of the Adults' Parade.
The number of Mocko Jumbies was high as well. Mystical, Aboriginal, Traditional, and Jumbie Jamboree groups all showed that the traditional stilt walkers are gaining young members. John McCleverty's Traditional Mocko Jumbie group performed their rendition of the Mambo on stilts showing how far the limits can be pushed from ten feet above the ground.
The traditional late start was about average, with the first part of the parade rolling a little more than 40 minutes behind schedule. Big gaps in the middle of the parade made up the start. The first 30 entries moved along with some consistency. The larger troupes and floupes, grouped among the last 15 spots, came through in spurts with dead time between. This resulted in the last of the Traditional Indians moving the tail of the parade through Post Office Square a few moments after 6:00 p.m. even though entries were down to 45 this year.
Entries may have been down, but one new large troupe, Infernos, joined the traditional big troupes, Elskoe and Associates, Gypsies, Jesters, Fun Lovers and Hugga Bunch. Infernos showed well in the competition of colorful costumes, wild dancing, and enthusiastic revelry. Adults' Parade may be the wind up event of Carnival 1999, but the big troupe members showed little sign of winding down Saturday afternoon.
Last blast of Carnival 1999 was the thunder of fireworks over Charlotte Amalie harbor. Warning reports counted down the five minutes before the 9:00 p.m. start. The show, launched from two vessels anchored in the harbor, featured almost continuous action from the start through the overwhelming finale some 25 minutes later. The bright colors in the sky, reflected off the harbor waters, were punctuated by resounding blasts of sound echoing off the hillsides. A trickle of remaining shells were slowly sent up after the finale, perhaps to illuminate the way home for weary revelers closing out Carnival 1999.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Keeping our community informed is our top priority.
If you have a news tip to share, please call or text us at 340-228-8784.

Support local + independent journalism in the U.S. Virgin Islands

Unlike many news organizations, we haven't put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as accessible as we can. Our independent journalism costs time, money and hard work to keep you informed, but we do it because we believe that it matters. We know that informed communities are empowered ones. If you appreciate our reporting and want to help make our future more secure, please consider donating.