On the 12th day of Christmas, Williamsburg morphed into a zany wonderland straight out of the scriptures — with camels, donkeys and floats parading along Meeker Avenue, and more glitz than a sequin factory — as tens of thousands of observers took to the streets in their majestic best on Jan. 8 for Three Kings Day.
Brooklyn didn’t fleece on the fanfare!
Tito Nieves, the Puerto Rican entertainer known as the “Pavarotti of salsa,” helmed as the parade’s godfather, and Borough President Markowitz kicked off the festivities — which mark the three wise men’s slog to Bethlehem to lug presents for baby Jesus — at Borough Hall by presenting gifts to children and a proclamation (what else!) to the parade committee.
Jorge Velez, Joe Muniz and Tomas Hernandez were among the rollicking reincarnations of the biblical threesome — heralded in Latin America above Santa as being important holiday figures — with Muniz’s sunglasses adding a cool twist to his golden and purple robes.
Not to be outshone, PS 151 students Ivan Perez, Ivan Sandovar and Lucas Falu put a festive foot forward in glittering vestments and towering crowns, carrying bejeweled boxes containing — we’re hopin’, at least — gold, frankincense and myrrh to replicate the wise men’s gifts.
The scintillating strut, now in its 15th year, is one of the city’s jolliest — and it keeps on getting better, according to founder and organizer Radamas Millan, owner of San German Records on Moore Street.
“Our goal was to make this event the biggest one of its kind in Williamsburg — I think it has become that,” he bragged.
Youngsters at the Brooklyn Children’s Museum got a head start on the festivities on Jan. 6, when they made jeweled crowns and discovered how the holiday — also called the Feast of the Epiphany — is celebrated in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida, where the day marks the start of the carnival season that lasts until Mardi Gras, with sweets called king’s cakes adding the honey.
Reach reporter Shavana Abruzzo at [email protected] or by calling (718) 260-2529.