>> View Miami Carnival 2011 Coverage

Miami Carnival, officially tagged the “last lap” of the carnival season is held during the second weekend of October each year. The beauty of this carnival is that it allows you to wuk up and move your waistline to all the great soca & calypso music from the Caribbean and summer carnival seasons (you get the best of everything!) This year, over 20 bands competed for “Band of the Year” along with 6 steel pan orchestras to make it one of the largest Miami carnivals in history. So you have your pretty mas and sexy feather like costumes with head pieces and oh yeah standards ... Miami Carnival still promotes the usage of waving standards and big flags on poles ... why not eh!? What else can you prop onto the stage and shake what your mother gave you for the judges ... envious people only stare in delight to be honest but then again, its carnival ... like C.N.N. says ...."Anything Goes"!!!!!

This year was the umpteenth year that Trini Jungle Juice has been attending Miami Carnival and most of us end up playing with Generation X mas band (this was #5 for me and my 3rd year as a section leader). Now with the weather being a bit topsy turvey throughout the entire week and weekend is when the celebrations hits their highest peaks we were a bit worried it would be our first rainy Miami Carnival due to the tropical wave we endured on Saturday but luckily we only got a few showers in the morning and beautiful sunshine for the rest of the day! We arrived at Sun Life Stadium around 11am and began searching for the bands (we were late, and were still one of the first people there!).

Now with TJJ Miami Carnival Fete-a-lot-athon Team very very very very (did I say very) THICK this year ... that's right ... about Twelve!!! ... almost similar to 2009 Miami-Broward ONE Carnival (View Coverage) ... We decided to deploy the soldiers all over the parade route however, making Gen-X Ground Zero. So Carnival Nationz, Mascots Int'l, Ascension & Natural Freaks ... we coming for a storm ... we coming for a raid ... we coming to make a Tornado!

Back at Ground Zero ... first on the agenda was breakfast (have to have a good base for all the alcohol to be consumed during the day)! Fortunately, Generation X provided each masquerader with a small snack which included beef patties and doubles (mmm... my favourite)!! Next up ... THE BAR! Each foot soldier drinking their choice of poison and firewater... from Vodka & Juice, Rum & Soda, Beer to Just Straight Up Shots of Puncheon, we were officially ready to dance and dingolay our way down the streets of Miami! Unfortunately, we were going no where fast. For the next 3 hours we all waited through sporadic rain showers for the parade to start (as some females stressed and felt .... sigh ... this was not a good thing for their feathers). After much anticipation, finally, it was time to whistle and wine and move we behind amongst the record breaking 1000 plus Generation X masqueraders in attendance (the biggest band on the road!) We all had one goal in mind, head for de stage at Sun Life Stadium! This was the 2nd year at this venue and it seemed like the carnival committee was still working out the logistics of the event as the carnival started very late. The venue was very accessible and easy to find with ample parking areas. There was a large police presence who conducted traffic and ensured the safety of the masqueraders for most of the day.

This year Generation X provided the crowd with a variety of top DJ’s including DJ Crown Prince, Private Ryan, Walshy Fire and Genesis (winning best DJ on the road). This combination guaranteed the high energy of the crowd who Jones & Wuked up all day long! Natural Freaks had the infamous Back to Basics and the unpredictable Young Chow. All the other bands had their fair share of excellent DJs but it was all too much debauchery on the road taking place for us to realise who was who and who was spinning what ... because once bamcee flinging and pelting ... and definitely drive by wining in season ... ADVANTAGE!!!!!

Most of the bands if not all also provided lunch for all masqueraders along with alcoholic drink tickets ... so you can more than get your alcohol and food ... All Inclusive maybe!? With the amount of masqueraders on the road this year the usual 1 drink truck didn’t seem to be enough to service everyone. Most importantly though, drinks were flowing for the entire day (nothing ran out)! Despite the wait for drinks everyone was primed to take advantage of the stage. We entered the park around 8pm with the mic man hyping everyone up to cross the stage, yet for the next 2 hours the band was at a standstill (traffic jam in de place). Finally, at around 10:30pm we crossed the stage in fine splendour and rudeness!!! 

All the aches and pains from the day seemed to disappear as we rushed the stage waving our flags high and representing where we were from! (Miami Carnival has a wide variety of masqueraders from around the globe)

Despite the rain, this year's Miami-Broward ONE Carnival topped the list of North American carnivals as it always does! It is a carnival where people unite to celebrate Caribbean culture and make great memories with friends to last a life time. We are sad to say that the 2011 carnival season is DONE!

See you all in 2012 ... First stop .... TRINIDAD & TOBAGO!!!!! (bearing in mind there is still a curfew) .... THEY CANNOT STOP US!!!!!!

-Kristel aka Mistel 'Glo Ko Ko Juice'
(Scorn Juice contributed to this review)

Did we forget anything? Add your 2 cents below...

>> View Miami Carnival Parade Gallery Part 1
>> View Miami Carnival Parade Gallery Part 2
>> View Miami Carnival Parade Gallery Part 3
>> View Miami Carnival Parade Gallery Part 4
>> View Miami Carnival Parade Gallery Part 5
>> View Miami Carnival Parade Gallery Part 6
>> View Miami Carnival Parade Gallery Part 7
>> View Miami Carnival Parade Gallery Part 8
>> View Miami Carnival 2011 Coverage