While well-known for its pristine beaches and turquoise waters, St. Croix recently has received more notice for its fantastic holiday season events. Beginning Thanksgiving week, the calendar of holiday festivities on St. Croix lasts more than a month!
Yes, that’s right. A whole month of dancing, singing, colorful costumes, delectable local food, boat parades, adult & kids parades and fireworks - all set against a gorgeous Caribbean backdrop.
Some of the islands events are officially part of the Crucian Christmas Festival and some are sponsored by other organizations. Christmas has long been a focal point for St. Croix merriment.
"All Ah We Are Carnival: 2013-2014," (a.k.a. Crucian Christmas Festival) promises to be even bigger this year as it enters its 61st year.
The fun starts around Thanksgiving and ends in early January.
The roster of events include six we love:
1. Boat Parade
St. Croix’s annual Boat Parade is one of the biggest of its kind in the Caribbean. This traditional parade started in 1994 as the local boating community’s way of thanking everyone for supporting the fishing and boating industry in St. Croix. Almost two decades later, the Boat Parade has become one of the most anticipated highlights in the Crucian Christmas Festival.
This year’s parade is slated on December 14, and is expected to draw huge crowds of locals and tourists as beautifully decorated boats cruise through Christiansted Harbor. Festivities start at around 1 pm at the Christiansted Boardwalk, and the Boat Parade will kick off at sunset, around 6 pm. A beautiful fireworks display will mark the end of the parade.
2. Thanksgiving Jump Up
St. Croix simply loves Jump Ups, they celebrate them four times a year! The Festival-like party is held every Valentine’s Day, the months of May and June, and on the Friday after Thanksgiving.
This year’s wildly anticipated Thanksgiving Jump Up will be on November 29. As usual, streets will be closed down from 6 pm until about 10 pm to give way to street dancing and live music. Jump Up staple, the iconic Mocko Jumbies will take center stage once again, as they balance on stilts and dance to the beat of steel drum bands and eclectic musicians. Even people who have seen Mocko Jumbies before never cease to be entertained and amazed at the performers’ amazing balancing skills. Mocko Jumbies have been part of the Virgin Islands culture for centuries - legend has it that they ward off evil spirits.
Sponsored by the CRRA (Christiansted Restaurant & Retail Association), the Thanksgiving Jump Up is also a great opportunity to showcase local cuisines, unique handcrafted jewelry, and authentic Caribbean music and artists. The Thanksgiving Jump Up is a great opportunity to bond with residents and visitors alike. So, soak up a bit of Crucian culture during Thanksgiving Jump Up and don’t forget to take advantage of the late hours and special deals to be found in Christiansted town’s many shops!
3. Starving Artists Day
One of the most awaited fundraising events of the year, Starving Artists Day showcases arts and crafts made by local artists. The St. Croix Landmarks Society organizes this event, which will be held on set on December 1 this year at Estate Whim Museum in Frederiksted.
The event will feature over 60 local artists, crafts persons, jewelers, and food producers. Fine arts, original crafts, sculptures, photography, ceramics, and Caribbean food are on display and for sale at Starving Artists booths peppered across the grounds of Estate Whim.
This event will also feature an Estate Whim Museum open house, as well as amazing discounts in the Museum Store. Enjoy self guided tours, cash raffle, cake walk, a sweet bread competition, and much more.
4. Christmas Spoken Here
Children in St. Croix look forward to this event as this is one of the very first occasions that Santa Claus - or maybe one of his helpers 🙂 - makes an appearance.
This year, Christmas Spoken Here is scheduled for December 8 at the St. George Village Botanical Garden.
Pose for the picture with Santa in his sleigh, listen to holiday carolers, partake in arts and crafts and enjoy fabulous local food in this joyous event.
5. Children’s Parade
They say Christmas is for children. St. Croix has the perfect parade for the kids! On January 3, 2014, kids from as young as 2 years old get to show the adults how to party. They will dance, jump, and march in the streets to their hearts delight, dressed in colorful costumes. Participants are organized by troupe, each with its ow
n theme. Themes are varied and entertaining each year - from Mocko Jumbies to dragons, aliens, Indians, and much more.
6. Adult Festival Parade
Meh-son! There is nothing like the St. Croix Crucian Christmas Festival Adult Parade. This much-awaited event attracts thousands of locals and visitors each year. Troupes spend months preparing costumes and themes to delight the crowds lining the streets of Frederiksted town.
On January 4, 2014, join us and be amazed as the Adult Festival Parade kicks off with expertly-crafted, colorful costumes, great music, and festive spirit that St. Croix people are known for.
The Adult Parade in St. Croix typically has more than 45 entries each year, and the festivities can last 8 hours and beyond. Established troupes like Gentlemen of Jones, Party Lovers, Infernos, and Jesters perform various themes to the beat of steel drums and various calypso bands. During this wonderful celebration you often see people from all walks of life – from business people, doctors, politicians, teachers, to bewildered but thrilled visitors – dancing to their heart’s content in a sea of colors and music.
So, if you are in the mood for some serious festivities during the holidays, tuck away your winter wardrobe, pack some board shorts and sunscreen, and head down to St. Croix.
And, of course, if you are bitten by the Crucian bug like so many, check out Blue Sky Real Estate’s Rentals for St. Croix’s most charming homes, vacation villas and rentals!
Blue Sky Real Estate represents large and small Caribbean real estate properties located all over St. Croix, St. Thomas, and St. John in the US Virgin Islands. Blue Sky also operates in the British Virgin Islands from its Virgin Gorda location. Whether you are interested in a luxury home, undeveloped land, condo, fix-upper, commercial property, a hilltop perch or a beachfront oasis, Blue Sky Real Estate knows Virgin Islands Real Estate. Contact Us today!