2008 Dominican Day Parade in NYC – Part 2

This is the second of two posts on the Dominican Parade.

The next picture was just one of those things. This guy may have been associated with some group, but I sure can’t figure out who. He and another cyclist were in an open area of the parade and they just kept doing some circling around in the street while waiting for the cross traffic at 46th to go by. In the meantime, this guy was doing the same trick again and again. He was pretty good at it, but it was obvious that he was still practicing. I gotta admit that I enjoyed the trick even though he seldom could hold the position for more than a moment.

A mambo group that didn’t mambo came through after the cyclist. But they didn’t dance at all while I was watching. The one photo that almost worked was accompanied by half the flag of my neighbor as she waved incessantly…so, no photo. Sorry.

Another group followed them that I sure don’t understand. It’s called “Grupo De Lechones” and had a sign mentioning Carnaval. Fine. But what were the Egyptian masks on the sign for? I just don’t understand. But I did like the weird skateboard used by one of the marchers. He’s below.

But following him was the parade highlight. I had seen these guys last year and just thinking of what they did raises the little hairs on the back of my neck. They were the “beasties” I mentioned in yesterday’s post, but beasties with weapons! Well, sort of. They had bullwhips and they were cracking those whips constantly. These weren’t little snaps and the like. They were loud and…well, they were really loud and close to the crowd at times.

The next picture shows one of the close ones. These guys were vigorous in their whipcracking. And very skilled. And loud.

The next picture shows two of my favorite beasties. (I have no other name for them and I kinda like “beastie”.) The guy on the left was very friendly and came over and was posing and talking with some of the people to my left. The guy on the right had the most interesting hat in the entire parade.

I enjoyed the next group that followed, too. It was a Dominican Tae Kwon Do group that did some moves and the like in front of us. The best part was what I took the picture of: one of the more skilled guys (I presume) leapt over the hand-held sign and broke a board being held by one of his fellows. A nice little trick, and very effective.

The group itself had people of a wide range of ages. Quite a few kids.

There was even a mention of the Iraq War issue by some military members and their families. The next picture shows some people carrying a picture and placard. The sign held by the soldier and the family(?) members are identical and state “I am Boricua Air Force Reserve Sgt. Daniel Jorge and I am headed to Iraq. Please don’t forget the sacrifice of my military borthers Dominican soldiers Alex Jimenez, Juan Alcantara and Marine Rian Tejada and Columbian Jonathan Rivadineira and pray for my safe return.” God bless you, them, and your families.

Incidentally, “Boricua” seems to be a word for the Puerto Rican people.

Some more beasties. Ah, they were ever present in the parade and I got so few good shots of them. They are just so colorful and weird that I don’t know why it really doesn’t come out better.

During much of the parade, there were lots of political candidates present and/or being represented by lots of supporters. Except for Mayor Bloomberg, who had no overtly political signs around (he marched in the “dignitary” group); every single politician was a Democrat. But that’s so very typical of NYC. I really have no interest in showing their signs and the like, but two of the three usual group was in the parade: Charlie Rangel rode in his convertible and Anthony Weiner did his bullhorn bit. No sign of Chuck Schumer.

But the one political display I will show is the next picture. I just looked at it and laughed that State Senate candidate Monserrate viewed this as a parade vehicle. There were lots of his supporters around and I doubt the candidate was in this stretch limo, but I can’t resist putting this into the posting. I presume it is rented, but the idea of this being one of his vehicles is a hoot. How much do we pay State Senators here, anyway? (I googled it and it seems to be just below $80K, but it is only a part-time position.)

So, there was candidate after candidate. To tell you the truth, the weather was looking a bit iffy and I wasn’t very happy with the caliber of the displays. But then some dancers showed up and made me perk up. This group was quite good. As I always say, combining native costumes and dance is always a real plus in a parade.

There were some more floats and some were fine. There were politicians and money order businesses and the like. But after that last set of dancers it wasn’t until 14 minutes later than I found a group I enjoyed enough to write about: models. I think it was some sort of model school, but maybe not. The thing I really liked was something I really couldn’t capture: they spent a while standing and doing this sort of weird wave that reminds me of Queen Elizabeth when she waves to crowds. A sort of minimalist twist of the arm more than a wave. These young ladies were more than a little bored although one of them is giving me a bit of a saucy look. Well, maybe to someone on my right…

The parade itself was very good. Too many politicians. Not enough dancing. But those are quibbles. The crowd’s enthusiasm was wonderful and a sight to behold. The ear-splitting cheers and flag waving and the like were a delight. It’s a good thing to be compared to the Puerto Rican Day Parade and this parade is getting into that class. It needs a few celebrities and maybe about 10 more decibels, but that’s probably about all.

-H

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Explore posts in the same categories: Events, Manhattan, Mid-town, Parades, Wanderings

One Comment on “2008 Dominican Day Parade in NYC – Part 2”

  1. g Says:

    the beasties are called Diablos Cajuelos


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