Revelers Enjoy Carnival Street Parades across Germany

February 21, 2023

DUESSELDORF, Germany — Hundreds of thousands of revelers took to the streets across Germany Monday to celebrate Carnival dressed up in colorful costumes, amid an abundance of candy, flowers and alcohol.

Popular street parades in traditional Carnival strongholds such as Duesseldorf, Cologne and Mainz in the Rhineland drew huge crowds of locals and tourists alike. Schools remained closed in many regions in the west so children could join the parades.

Many of the processions showcased floats that addressed global political topics with biting sarcasm.

In Duesseldorf, one float titled “Free Iran” was themed with a small cleric struggling to free himself from the black, free-flowing long hair of a gigantic woman’s head.

The theme float ‘Embodied Quotes’ the motto of the 1911 session, with a depiction of Russian President Putin kissing the devil, rides in the parade in Cologne, Germany, Monday, Feb. 20, 2023. (Oliver Berg/dpa via AP)

Another float depicted an oversized, naked Russian President Vladimir Putin taking a “blood bath” in a tub painted in the yellow and blue colors of Ukraine.

In Cologne’s Shrove Monday procession, a float showed Putin in vampire attire kissing the devil and putting the world through a meat grinder, the German news agency dpa reported.

Costumed revelers wait for the carnival parade in Duesseldorf, Germany, Monday, Feb. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)
A carnival float depicting German Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki fighting with an abuse devil is seen ahead of the start of the traditional carnival parade in Duesseldorf, Germany, on Monday, Feb. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)
German sculptor and illustrator Jaques Tilly, known for his politically satirical sculptures that adorn floats in protests and parades, rides his bicycle ahead of the start of the traditional carnival parade in Duesseldorf, Germany, on Monday, Feb. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Thousands lined the streets as the parades slowly made their ways through the cities. Onlookers cheered as traditional bands played familiar tunes, dancers in glitzy costumes marched along, and Carnival princes and princesses on top of the floats threw down candy and flowers.

In the eastern German city of Halle, a street parade was canceled early after a woman was injured in an accident, dpa reported.



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