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McKinley High School students paint coconuts for Zulu parade in New Orleans

1 year 3 months 3 weeks ago Monday, February 06 2023 Feb 6, 2023 February 06, 2023 6:56 AM February 06, 2023 in 2une In
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE - If you've ever been to New Orleans' Zulu parade, then you know the mission is to catch the signature decorative coconuts—McKinley High School is adding its own flair to the hot list items.

Each coconut thrown in the Zulu parade is unique in its own way, and the high school students are contributing to the parade's specialty.

Students at McKinley High created these gold coconuts. They feature the letter 'Z,' the year '23,' and they're all decked out in rhinestones.

Christopher Fitzgerald is the art teacher at McKinley High. The school has been painting coconuts for Zulu for the last several years, and it's all been to help out their principal who rides in the Zulu parade.

"Each one is a little bit different," Fitzgerald said. "Dr. Thompson, our principal, asked us to do it and he had something in mind that we started they're the 'Walking Warriors,' and he also mentioned the Zulu Tramps, so we did a little motif on some of that stuff."

It's a pretty important task, especially to have their own Baton Rouge twist being presented in one of the biggest Mardi Gras parades in New Orleans.

"Considering McKinley's general history and us being the first colored school down here, and then being part of that culture, and participating in the Zulu parade, I think that's really cool," said Ashlynn Scott, a senior at McKinley High School. "I guess it pays homage to the times and it keeps everybody interlocked because of culture."

"It gives us an opportunity to be creative not only for our own pleasure but to see the other people catching the coconuts and being happy about it," said Lailah Collins, another senior.

Their goal is to paint 500 coconuts for the Zulu parade in total.

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