Milwaukee Krampusnacht: Call for 2023 Parade Floats

Happy Spring everyone, though in Wisconsin, what does that even mean, amiright?

Planning for Milwaukee Krampusnacht 2023, which will take place Sunday, Dec. 3 in the Brewery District, is underway. We want to get something out there right away so you have time to plan for a potential spring/summer/fall project: a float for our 2023 Krampus Parade. The floats will be in the parade and displayed somewhere on the street afterward.

This is just what popped up when I googled “Krampus float”

This is a good opportunity for organizations, clubs, businesses, or just groups of friends. Here’s what we have so far for guidelines.

-Floats must be pushed/ pulled by human or bicycle power, no motorized vehicles.

-We will have more specific measurements soon, but think something the size of a car or smaller– Juneau Ave is narrow at certain points. Also, have some decent wheels because 10th and Juneau is a rocky road of bricks.

-Should we do a juried prize for this? Maybe, we’ll discuss.

Krampus themed floats are great, of course, but anything that fits the tone of the event is welcome. Here’s some ideas that might get your thinking process started. If any of these specific ideas grab your interest, contact us (see below). But to be clear, you are able and encouraged to come up with your own ideas, too.

-A great Wisconsin-specific piece of lore is the story of the Christmas Tree Ship. The Rouse Simmons transported trees from “Up North” to Chicago every winter, but in 1912, the ship sank in a storm and all hands were lost. Legend has it that you can see the Rouse Simmons ghost ship sailing on the lake trying to complete their voyage in stormy weather:

A float based on the legend might be a great project for people who are into model building.

The Rouse Simmons aka the Christmas Tree Ship, seen here loaded up with trees.

-How about a giant Icelandic Yule Cat (Jólakötturinn) being pulled by a team of Yule Lads?

Jolakotturrin Yule Cat

-Shopping cart chaos! Could be a funny statement on consumerism to make some creative shopping cart floats pushed by monsters.

-Namahage is a Japanese New Year’s Eve tradition similar to Krampus. Would love to see it represented. Fun project for an Anime Club?

If you’re interested, I don’t think we’ll have an application this year, but what you should do is send us an email. Describe your idea, and/or create a sketch (even a crude one) just so we can make sure it’s appropriate and not being duplicated by someone else. Deadline on this TBD, probably sometime in late fall. Email:

That email can also be used if you’re interesting in helping organize or volunteer for this year’s event. Just say hi and tell us some areas of interest.

As always, we must (and will) continue to kick ass!

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