Dec. 3, 2003 — The Crucian Christmas Festival shined with glitz, glamour, pageantry and more in back-to-back festival parades this holiday weekend. Thousands of people lined the streets of Frederiksted to witness the splendor of the adults' parade on Saturday, and although the crowd was much smaller for Friday's children's parade, it too sparkled and shined.
The parades, organized by the festival committee, are the highlight of the two-week-long annual festival.
The Children's Parade truly displayed the youth of St. Croix. On Friday morning the royalty waved, majorettes twirled batons, and dancers in festive costumes moved in time with the music as young musicians played steel pan. Although the parade was a short and sweet affair with just 18 entries, the two-hour event nevertheless delighted onlookers.
Festival Prince Donnell Francis and Princess Ashley Garcia led the parade, followed closely by the St. Croix Majorettes, the Freedom City Majikal Twirlerz and the Sparkle Lites Twirlers.
Other royalty included the St. Thomas Carnival Prince and Princess, Sylvester Anthony and Kristal Anthony; Miss Business and Professional Women's Toddler, Nikita Charles; Sunflower Summer Camp King Askia Richards and Queen Brittney Parilon; Miss Charles H. Emanuel, Thea Knight; Charles H. Emanuel Prince Yohannei Acoy and Princess Keeyyanna Parilla; Miss St. Croix Educational Complex, Chantal Harrigan; Miss Ricardo Richards, Elle Nielson; and Miss Elementary, Zenida Colon.
Also participating were the Ricardo Richards Elementary School Pan Connection, the Arthur A. Richards Steel Pan Band and the Caribbean Fusion Band.
On Saturday the adults took center stage in a parade that featured queens, Moko Jumbies, majorettes, troupes, and floats. There was definitely something to delight both young and old. Here are just some of the highlights.
As part of AARP's "Glitz, Glamour and Aging in Style," approximately 25 seniors in bright orange, red and yellow — the women in cultural dresses and the men in outfits featuring matching madras shirts — danced down the parade route to quelbe music.
Continuing an important tradition, the eight members of the Guardians of Culture Moko Jumbies dazzled the crowd with their intricate dance steps atop stilts as high as eight-feet tall.
Delighting the festival crowd, the "Gentlemen of Jones" were elegant in their white tux, tails and top hats, canes and walking shoes.
Divi Carina Bay's entry, "Showgirls and High Rollers," presented Las Vegas-styled showgirls dressed in black, royal blue and white costumes, all with matching fans. The gentlemen, decked out as high rollers, wore black-and-white striped pants and suspenders.
Acknowledging the various cultures and traditions that have been an integral part of the history of the Caribbean, students of the St. Croix Educational Complex presented a four-section troupe entitled "A Cultural Melting Pot."
The 26-entry parade lasted five hours and culminated in a massive tramp to the music of the Xpress band.
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