Courtesy of: The Morning News
By: Rosalie Klein
Aruba’s Meteorological Office sent out a warning on Friday evening of a wet weekend to come, and the skies decided to deliver their aqueous bounty just as costumed revelers began making their way down L.G. Smith Boulevard for the first major parade of Carnival 59, on Saturday evening, January 5.
The Torch Parade is an ebullient affair, with casual costumes revealing the individual creativity of participants. It is remarkable as to what can be achieved with a logo tee shirt and a few leftover holiday lights!
Eight carnival groups participated, beginning with Champagne, followed by Royal, T.O.B., Dushi, Majestic, Pleasers and Teasers, OPC and bringing up the rear, XC-Lanz Carnival Group. Regally residing over all was Aruba’s 58th Carnival Queen, Lynette Do Nascimiento, of Champagne Carnival Group, who will turn over her crown to the new queen on February 1. Over 6400 participants made their way from the west end of Oranjestad to the east side. Intermittent showers did not dampen the energy or extinguish the brilliance so the evening.
The Torch Parade heralds weeks of parades, parties, contests and queen elections which will end at midnight on February 12, with the occurrence of Ash Wednesday. Until then it will six hectic weeks of sumptuous costumes, lively music and dancing in the streets, as islanders celebrate life and their greatest Caribbean cultural event.