Last year’s Parade of the Year, Muses, has taken a step back, as their 2012 floats lacked first rate execution. Blaine Kern didn’t do his usual excellent work for a relatively new super krewe. The floats moved so quickly it was difficult to get a good look.

Their own floats sparkled as usual (also made by Kern). Super krewes draw a huge audience, which often brings out the boorish behavior in many hard drinking spectators, as they jostle the crowd in pursuit of Muses’ vaunted logoed throws.

Muses’ marching groups are second to none, and the 610 Stompers, Bearded Oysters, Pussyfooters, Camel Toe Lady Steppers and Flying Elvi didn’t disappoint.

Not too long ago, Muses was a new krewe that drew much smaller crowds. The sheer number of unique throws, memorable floats and biting satire hadn’t caught on yet. Any ordinary Joe could catch a shoe back then. Those days are way over now.

Muses throws were not anything special for 2012. Check out the YouTube video above, that is one cool fan!! I caught it several years ago. I’m waiting for another out-of-the-box throw.

Their throws included a number of new logoed items, including a band-aid box; a coin purse on a lanyard; a bottle opener/flashlight on a bead and a floating liquid pen. The most original of those throws is the floating liquid pen. That’s a fun writing tool!

2012 Muses Purse on Lanyard

2012 Muses Purse on Lanyard

I rate Muses number 3 for 2012.

Number 2 is REX, the King of Carnival. They are the oldest daytime parade and still roll on wooden wagon wheels.

Rex Wooden Wagon Wheels

Rex Wooden Wagon Wheels

 

Rex Wooden Wagon Wheels 2009

Rex Wooden Wagon Wheels 2009

REX is number 2 for their historic use of wagon wheels, plus several other important factors. It was a perfect day, and REX is a daytime parade. Blaine Kern builds this parade, and it’s their number 1 showcase daytime parade. The paint job was gorgeous! Kudos to the Kern painting team.

REX introduced their new Butterfly King float for 2012.

REX New Butterfly King Float

REX New Butterfly King Float photo courtesy WWL-TV

REX had several good bands, including the United States Army and the Tulane University Marching Bands. Monroe’s High School Marching Band delivered a strong performance as well. By the time REX rolls on Fat Tuesday, most high school bands are unable to march anymore due to marching limits imposed by the City Council.

The floats looked terrific, as did the krewe’s costumes. The throws were typically REX with a couple of exceptions- they had a fancy cloisonne pin celebrating the new Butterfly King float and re-introduced the plush crown they first threw a few years ago.

Number 1 for 2012 goes to Hermes!! They had it all together in 2012, and that’s a very tall order.

Their bands were top notch- St. Augustine, Xavier Prep, L.B. Landry, McDonogh 35 and several out-of-state bands all marched with Hermes.

Hermes’ throws were improved. They threw plastic Hermes goblets, a light up Hermes headband with plastic wings (D’Etat threw the same headband in purple with the D’Etat logo instead of wings), light up medical caduceus beads, blinky winged shoe beads and a light up ball. A nice throw this year was a crawfish/centipede stuffed toy in Mardi Gras colors. I’m not sure if this an official Hermes toy or a generous generic one.

Hermes 2012 Light Up Headband with Light Up Ball

Hermes 2012 Light Up Headband with Light Up Ball

The floats were top of the line old fashioned, marked by striking colors and expressive prop figures, wonderfully detailed, and an abundance of bouncing paper ornaments, including flowers, grapes, snowflakes and more. The floats moved at a reasonable pace and the traditional flambeaux were interspersed with the floats as were the Lieutenants on horseback, who dispensed purple riding doubloons.

1202 Hermes Float The Glories of this World

2012 Hermes Float The Glories of this World on St. Charles Ave.

The Krewe of Hermes rolls down Napoleon Ave. near St. Charles Ave.

The Krewe of Hermes rolls down Napoleon Ave. near St. Charles Ave. (Sabree Hill, UptownMessenger.com)

As per tradition, the Hermes captain leads the parade in full regalia on a white horse.

Hermes Captain on Horse

Hermes Captain on Horse

Hermes with Caduceus

Mythical Cartoon Hermes with Caduceus

Special Mention goes to the Mystic Krewe of Proteus for the float work of Royal Artists. They have a web site here, it apparently hasn’t been updated for a couple of years, as they are Bordeaux Street uptown and the site lists the North Shore.

2012 Proteus Signature Fish Float

2012 Proteus Signature Fish Float

Rear of Signature Fish Float

Rear of Signature Fish Float

 

 

 

 

 

 

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