Rex, the oldest parading Carnival organization, presents its 139th parade, led by the Captain on his white horse. Thirty-three lieutenants on horseback appear in the 26-float procession, which brings history and beauty to the streets of New Orleans. Using traditional materials, Rex floats are rebuilt each year, most on old wagon chassis with wooden-spoke wheels. The 2020 Rex parade is the first created in collaboration with Royal Artists.
Throughout the ages, mankind has sought to divine the future, searching for portents of what is to come. The ancients looked to the heavens and to the natural world to find prophetic signs and symbols, some hopeful and some dark and foreboding. The realm of prophets and oracles, with its colorful stories and images, inspires the 2020 Rex procession.
Twenty themed floats will be joined by six iconic permanent floats, including the animated Butterfly King float and the traditional Boeuf Gras. Watch for bands—Rex’s band contest attracts the best. 440 riding members will throw Rex gold doubloons—introduced 60 years ago—and classic glass beads, but many parade-goers will be trying to collect a full set of float-specific beads and other throws, another Rex innovation.
Rex officials presented a special Rex scroll to Commander Avery Theard, leader of the NOPD Traffic Division. The scroll commended Commander Theard and his officers for their superb work in organizing and overseeing the New Orleans Carnival celebrations. Zulu officials and Mayor Cantrell added their praise to our policemen, firefighters and other first responders.
Rex officials also announced that the Rex Organization will take major steps toward a more “green” and sustainable parade. Tens of thousands of beads thrown from Rex floats will be recycled beads provided through a partnership with the Arc of Greater New Orleans, and 20,000 plastic Rex cups will be replaced by stainless steel cups etched with the Rex logo, decreasing the plastic load on New Orleans streets and storm drains.
Download the Rex 2020 Fact Sheet.
The 2020 theme offers wonderful opportunities to connect Carnival with classrooms. Once again, materials will be provided to help students explore the cultural, historical and artistic possibilities of “Omens and Auguries.”
Check the “Rex in the Classroom” area of the Rex website for more information, including parade notes and links.
Rex also continues a popular feature from past years, an opportunity for students to design their own floats using a downloadable PDF worksheet of a Rex float chassis. Student designs can be posted to Rex social media sites including: