Krewes of ‘tit Rex & Chewbacchus

While the giant Krewes of Sparta and Pygmalion floats rolled Uptown, we watched the miniature parade, ‘tit Rex, and the wonky and wonderful Intergalactic Krewe of Chewbacchus parade Downtown. A reaction to the super Krewe parades, ‘tit Rex was inspired by the tradition of kids decorating shoeboxes and parading them through school. This was my first time making it across town in time for the parade and it was everything I’d heard. The crowds were huge and the floats were tiny, creative and often satirical.

The parade moves at a glacial pace as the delicate floats are dragged by leashes through the Marigny, stopping often to pose for photos. I was thrilled to find myself packed in next to some of my fellow Pussyfooter dancers in fanciful costumes while waiting for each float and the occasional band to pass.

I loved how committed the parade was to the concept of tiny. Paraders passed out cocktail umbrellas as throws. There were 2 girls kneeling next to us with a tiny parade stand. They held toys that squealed in high voices and jumped up and down as the floats passed. A guy dressed as a clown holding a tiny violin announced the parade’s theme as each float passed, assessing them all as, “Not a big deal.” A woman across the street asked him to stop and said he was bothering her. That really “bothers” me. Whether the clown moved here a month ago or grew up on that street, he costumed up and became part of the show. Not everyone likes everything in a show but so what? It seemed like she was trying to… rain on his parade.

Next, we walked past costumed Star Wars fans to Krewe of Chewbacchus. Their 5th year was a banner one with the release of the new film. Fun throws included a glittery rubber ear, hand-stamped Chewbacchus coozies and bottle-cap necklaces emblazoned with an image of Princess Leah. I was very excited to see the Stomp Troopers, a collaboration between NOLArts Preservation Hall and iDIYA designed to include kids with autism in the parade.

Once a short little-known local gathering, there were over 100 micro-krewes celebrating everything from Mad Maxx to E. T. After a couple of hours, I stood high on a fence and tried to spot the firetruck signaling the end. It was nowhere in sight. It’d been a long day and Mardi Gras is a marathon done at a sprint’s pace, so we packed it in so we’d have energy for Sunday’s Barkus, the dog parade.

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Filed under Carnival, Charity, Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, Mardi Gras 2016, parade

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