May 2, 2023 – The Daily Herald -PHILIPSBURG–The streets of Philipsburg were transformed into a spectacular sea of colours and excitement as revelers snaked their way through the streets gyrating to energetic music, smiling, posing for photos and having an all-round good time for the Grand Carnival Parade on May 1, and Second Day Parade “Jamrade” on May 2.
At the close of the two days of revelry, “Island Revelers” by troupe leader Dylan Paul came ahead as Best Troupe, for the 2023 Carnival Parade, while Brandon Joseph from the Survivors Troupe won the Best Individual Costume category. Joseph’s costume, themed “Glory” was an attractive costume of bright pink, purple and yellow. Although no prizes were awarded to the winning troupe since 2016, as this has to be secured from a private sector partner, the St. Maarten Carnival Development Foundation (SCDF) has targeted this for 2024.
Just about every colour in the rainbow was evident in the colourful display of costumes. Scores of spectators lined the streets along the parade route to get an up close, first-hand view of the parade. As is customary, many families and groups set up tents and other posts, or popped the trunk of their sports utility vehicles to view the parade outside of the direct heat of the blistering sun along the route, while many others braved the direct heat to be part of the country’s colourful cultural spectacle.
In addition to the winning troupe Island Revelers, other troupes in the parade included Survivors, Rise of Empire, Road Gods, Blue Etoile, Tropical, Rio Productions, and Caribbean United. Visiting participants were Balance Masqueraders from St. Kitts and Nevis; Monkey Hill Bull Troupe from St. Kitts and Nevis and St. Peters Actors also from St. Kitts and Nevis.
Survivors had sections on “our heroes,” “Freedom,” “Collective conscious” and “SXM on the rise.” A fleet of vehicles from Motorworld was included in the Island Revelers troupe. Blue Etoile’s sections included a cultural section, green section, individual black section, champagne section, a red section and a blue/coral section.
Tropical’s troupe included a drum band, a cultural section, a Barbie section, Little mermaid section, Maleficent section, Coors light section, individuals, Avatar and Wakanda,
In addition to Joseph, other individual costume participants included long time participant Randolph Scott, who had a float; Micheline Hunt’s “IFA” and two participants from the Tropical Troupe. Arrondell Mogen Rodney, Marlon Davis and Imara Berry (cultural wear) also participated with individual costumes.