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Monday, July 11, 2011

DC Carnival

DC Carnival was an interesting experience for us. It was different attending a carnival as a spectator. This small carnival had 23 advertised bands of all types representing many islands including Haiti, Grenada, and Jamaica. There were bands with children's choreographed dancing, Mardi Gras beads & boas, mud mas and steel pan ended the parade.

Spectators remained along the street watching, and didn't jump in with the masqueraders. Officers started putting up the police tape, and maybe that deterred people from crashing in, but I suspect it must be just the history of the parade, people don't storm. And this is probably due to the fact that the bands are small (you'd really stand out). It's not that there was massive police presence either. Sure, there were some cops on motorcycles, and horses throughout the parade, but it wasen't like the "army" like wall of police in Brooklyn.

Most of the costumes had that old school look, certainly no near naked skimpy designs, & if there were thongs or cage bras, we didn't see them. Prices ranged from $50 (for the tanks & shorts band) to $160 (didn't see any frontline prices online).

The mud mas was said to be the band, but when we saw them, masqueraders looked done, like it was J'Ouvert 9:00 a.m. They lost their music, so no wonder.

We chipped along with the pan bands when it was over, and it was nice going for a short while. Then the crowd followed, and it quickly became a massive crush of bodies barely moving. Not pleasant to say the least, reminded me too much of trying to get through the crowd of stormers at Caribana. We managed to duck out of the craziness and didn't bother to go to where it winds up at the marketplace, which was very fortunate, since we heard later about the shootings.
Well, we can say we've been to DC carnival. I know now that playing mas is preferred, you don't feel the same vibe at all when you simply watch. (Although I had no interest in playing mas this time.) We enjoyed Kes the night before more.

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