26 January 2013. New Orleans, Louisiana, USA. Mardi Gras. 'Tit Rex' miniature float parade, the Micro Krewe rolls with the theme of 'Bare Minimum.' In an age when parades in general get bigger and bigger, Tit Rex takes an opposite approach and shrinks everything down. Photo; Charlie Varley

‘The Smallest Parade in the Universe’ premiers Thursday, Oct. 29

Imagine a tiny, whimsical Rick Worth painted Duval Street with a tiny little parade roaring down the tiny little street inside Key West’s newest bar — The Waterfront Brewery. Chris Shultz, owner of the brewery, came up with the inaugural fund-raising brainchild for the Monroe Association for ReMARCable Citizens (MARC House), the non-profit which provides services for Monroe County’s developmentally and intellectually disabled adult residents.

“The MARC Board and family is so excited about this new event,” said Gordon Ross, the Director of Development and Public Relations at MARC, who is also gearing up for this weekend’s Tour de Keys 100-mile bike event and the pumpkins arriving at one of Key West’s most popular pumpkin patches. “I went crazy when Chris came to me with this fun idea.”

Ross is in the midst of recruiting all the fantastically creative locals to create miniature floats for the PG-13 parade debuting Oct. 29 from 5 to 9 p.m. The size limit is 18 inches long by 12 inches wide and no taller than 18 inches high. “It doesn’t even have to have wheels,” said Ross, since the parade’s locomotion is actually a conveyor belt.

The cost to be in the parade is $20 to the MARC House. If the artists agree, the floats will be auctioned off at the end of the event with half the proceeds going to the float builder and half going to the organization. That’s not all, the floats will be judged by a panel of judges with the favorite receiving a $1,000 award. Second place will net $750, and third will receive $250. Ross said seven floats have committed so far, and he is looking for as many floats as possible for a grand parade, “the more the merrier.”

Parade spectators can watch the processional live at Waterfront Brewery for a donation of $20 for general admission. Tickets will be available on KeysTix.com starting Monday, Oct. 5. Local photographer Mike Marrero will be filming the parade to be flashed along flat screens throughout the entire bar on the night of the event. The parade will be coordinated by longtime Fantasy Fest parade organizer Judy Bradford who jumped on board to help MARC House.

“It should look like a real full-sized parade when it’s being projected that evening,” said Ross.

Deadline for artists to register is Wednesday, Sept. 30. For more information, call Ross at 305-294-9526 ext. 25 or visit thesmallestparadeintheuniverse.com for the application.


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