Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Mummers Parade, St. John's, Newfoundland, December 18

It's that time of year again, when grown men can don dresses, paint their faces or put nylon stockings over their heads and parade in public, without fear of ridicule. (Women too.) Mummering, or janneying, is a centuries-old English Christmas tradition which survived export to the New World, at least to Newfoundland and Labrador. (And apparently to Philadelphia as well: the mummers in the photo are residents of that city. For more about mummering, click on the green, yellow and black guy.)

This year's St. John's Mummers Parade will be held on Saturday, December 18 (storm date is Sunday, December 19). If you don't have a disguise at hand, you can rig one up from bins of clothing at MacPherson Elementary at 40 Newtown Road, between one and two p. m. The parade begins from MacPherson at two, and there will be a concert and jam at The Rooms afterwards, beginning at three.

All are welcome. So are nonperishable food items.


Rattling Books' unabridged audio version of Mary Dalton's poetry collection Merrybegot contains a poem called "Janneying." To hear poems from Merrybegot, narrated by Anita Best, click here and here. Merrybegot is available as an unabridged audio book CD, or an unabridged MP3 download.