NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Carnival’s raunchiest, most risque and highly anticipated parade rolled through the French Quarter Saturday night (Feb. 16). Although bumped from their usual spot as the first ride of the season, Krewe du Vieux was just as controversial as always.
The parade is best summed up in the words of krewe members like Philip Crow.
“Political satire and irreverence,” Crow said, standing next to a float displaying a giant Vladimir Putin holding up a baby Donald Trump, a la young Simba and Rafiki in the Lion King.
There’s no arguing Krewe du Vieux and the parade’s sub-krewes appeal to more mature audiences. And while it’s true you can find bigger krewes with more impressive floats, Krewe du Vieux leaders like Sebastian Boegershausen say you won’t find a production like theirs anywhere else.
“The most fantastic aspect of my life to have this torrent of creativity that is behind me to put together these floats, to come up with all these incredible satirical ideas and to put together what’s, in my opinion the best show in New Orleans, the best parade in New Orleans bar none,” Boegershausen said.
Which is clear when you consider the content and do-it-yourself attitude.
“There’s a love and spirit that comes along with putting this krewe together that’s unlike anything I’ve ever experienced anywhere else,” Boegershausen said.
This year marked their 32nd year parading, but offered one notable change, with 2019 being the first year they did not unofficially kick off Carnival. Instead, Chebacchus marched first, rolling one week before Krewe du Vieux, but participants said the swap didn’t bother them much.
Jessica Muszynski walks with Krewe of Spank, one of the many suggestive walking groups who populate the parade, said although the idea took some getting used to, being second wasn’t so bad.
“It felt a little weird,” Muszynski said. “There was a moment, a second where I wondered if I should be mad at that, but everyone from the krewe was totally supportive. There’s enough Mardi Gras for everyone!”
In fact, they say all that really matters, is that everyone has a good time
“It’s as close as I will probably ever come to being a rock star. We’re pulling the float down the street and they’re cheering and high-fiving and we’re right in the middle of it. And it really is a lot of fun,” Crow said.