Last weekend I attended yet another parade in Montréal. The Carafiesta parade is a relaxed, colourful, and often impromptu movement of people and costumes along Boulevard René Lévesque from Rue Guy in downtown Montréal. Relatively cheap flights can often be found from Montréal to the Caribbean islands, in fact other than when I was living in the Caribbean I’ve never been closer. So it makes sense that there would be a strong Caribbean community in Montréal, and the Carafiesta parade is a chance to get out and showcase their colourful culture.
Parade photos below >>>
From elaborately designed mardi-gras style costumes, to somewhat tribal paint covered ravers, to cute kids. Men, women, bikinis, wolf costumes, music, dance; there was almost something for everyone.
The gyrating hips of the scantily clad women may put some people off. Renee took one look at a YouTube video from last year, saw bottoms rubbing against each other, and said “I’m not going to that.” But sexy dancing and minimal clothing as a video niche does especially well on YouTube, so you can’t blame someone for focussing on this aspect in their video, but there is more to the Carafiesta parade than somewhat exotic dancing, just as there is more to the Caribbean people than you will see in Cool Runnings.
There were no big elaborate floats, just flatbed trucks with large speaker systems. There was no exact start time and as a parade it did move incredibly slowly. I found myself walking up and down the parade route taking photos of the people I found interesting; had I decided to stay in one spot and wait for the parade to pass me by I probably would have been there for numerous hours with long waits in between floats. The parade would stop and start at random, there were often large gaps between parade participants. With no obvious time frame I’m sure it blocked the streets until the police finally called an end to it or the dance party of paint covered ravers lost interest – I’d bet on the police…
Check it out in 2013! Numbers attending have apparently been declining in recent years, but this is certainly more ‘real’ than the commercial Santa Parade, so come next year, take some photos and perhaps join in with some sexy dancing of your own!
Better than a Santa Parade, what do you think?