As we approach the end of the year, it only means that January is right around the corner! And with the first month of the year comes the highly anticipated annual King Mango Strut, Coconut Grove’s iconic satirical parade. On January 7, the epic affair will bring wacky costumes, vibrant floats, creative signs and live bands along with all the laughter and mischievousness that has been its hallmark for decades.
Four decades, to be exact, as this year marks its 40th anniversary. The theme for this year is I Can’t Get No DeSantisfaction, sure to raise a few eyebrows and certainly maintain the parade’s reputation as a tongue-in-cheek affair.
“This event has become a beloved tradition that pays homage to the lively spirit of Miami and serves as a reminder to all that a life without a laugh isn’t much of a life at all,” says longtime Parade board member and announcer Nathan Kurland.
Typically drawing 10,000 attendees each year, you can laugh, cheer and dance along with the many strutters marching down the roads. As always, all are welcome to participate and are encouraged to wear their most creative costumes.
The King Mango Strut begins at 2 p.m. at Commodore Plaza, before making a left turn onto Main Highway until it reaches the Grand Avenue/McFarlane intersection. From there, it will make a left turn onto Grand Avenue until it arrives back at Commodore Plaza.
Young participants that will be awarded the Little Miss Mango title will be selected from the crowd of onlookers at 2 p.m., where they will meet on the corner of Main Highway and Commodore Plaza.
Once the parade ends, the festivities will still continue on! Starting at 4 p.m., RoadKill and the Coconut Grove School of Rock Band will take center stage on Commodore Plaza for a block party, and Afro Beta will play on Fuller Street for guests to enjoy, along with plenty more surprises.
Put on by the non-profit organization King Mango Productions, Inc., the parade originated as a parody of the now defunct King Orange Jamboree Parade by founders Glenn Terry and Bill Dobson. They were denied entry to the parade due to their use of unconventional instruments like kazoos, conch shells and garbage can drums, so they decided to make their own. Inspired by what’s weird and wonderful about Miami and the year that was, the event puts “the ‘nut’ in Coconut Grove.”
When: Sunday, January 7, 2024
2 – 6 p.m.
Where: The streets of Coconut Grove, beginning at Commodore Plaza