J’Ouvert means “breaking of the dawn,” according to organizers of Boston’s annual Caribbean-American Carnival.

The Carnival parade, held this afternoon, is marking its 50th year. But the day began with the early morning J’Ouvert parade, which was founded by Andre Modestee and Althea Modestee-Labad in 1998.

Anyone can join in the J’Ouvert parade. Groups danced this morning to soca music played by DJs on trucks and marching bands playing rara music, as participants hurled paint and oil and talcum powder and pigments onto each other. Scheduled to begin at 5 a.m., the parade got moving around 6:30 a.m., beginning at Talbot Avenue and Brenard Street, and proceeding along Talbot Avenue toward Blue Hill Avenue.

Eight people were injured in a shooting around 7:45 a.m. near the parade, around 10 Talbot Ave. and Blue Hill Avenue, and two people were arrested in connection with the violence, according to Boston Police. Police Commissioner Michael Cox, WCVB5 reported, said “the shooting was not related to the parade since it happened on the outskirts of the parade route.”


• 2021: Cambridge Carnival Parade Returns For First Time In Three Years.

• 2019: At Protest Over Canceled Cambridge Carnival, Organizers Call For Scaled-Back Festival In Late September

• 2019: Cambridge Carnival Canceled Over Fears Of Gun Violence, Organizers Say

• 2017: 25th Cambridge Carnival Parade

• 2016 J’ouvert at Boston Caribbean Carnival.

2009 Caribbean Carnival Parade.

2008 Caribbean Carnival Parade.

• 2008: My review of Michael C. Smith’s photos of the Boston Caribbean Carnival and a bit about its history on its 35th anniversary.

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