Mardi Gras Day in the French Quarter

Everywhere else, it’s just Tuesday. Just one block from the debauchery of Bourbon Street, for many locals Mardi Gras Day in the French Quarter is a day of elaborate costumes, wandering bands and dancing in the streets. It was see-your-breath cold but after the crap-weather last year, icy wind seemed like a cakewalk. No time to write but they say a picture’s worth a thousand words so here are about 150,000 words. Continue reading

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Filed under Carnival, Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, Local Cuisine, Mardi Gras 2015, parade, walking

Krewes of Thoth and Bacchus

As a member of the Pussyfooters, I danced in 2 Mardi Gras parades this year, Muses and Krewe of Thoth. Best known as “the children’s parade for it’s inclusion of the children’s hospital, Thoth has the longest parade route at about 11 miles. That’s a lot of dancing, but I comfort myself thinking of the kids carrying sousaphones and bass drums. The weather was nice again and crowds were thick. We passed Okeanos lining up on our way to Thoth then jumped into the parade a few floats after the Muff-A-Lottas passed by.(Okay, first there were about 2 hours of waiting but we kept ourselves entertained). Continue reading

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Krewes of Iris and Tucks (and Endymion on TV)

It was another perfect day for parades, warm and sunny with a cool breeze. We arrived in time to see the end of the Krewe of Iris’ pretty parade and caught bands and dancers from Harney, Super Star Steppers, Mary D. Coghill, Xavier and McDonogh City Park Academy. Krewe of Tucks is a parade named for a bar that doesn’t exist anymore that features a giant toilet float and throws rolls of toilet paper. But, it’s great fun with stunning visuals like the neon foam monsters, the beaded corsets of Dames du Perlage, Kolossos (and their dancing sharks), the Star Wars-themed 501st Legion and dance troupes Disco Amigos, Muff-A-Lottas and Organ Grinders. Continue reading

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Hermes, D’Etat & Morpheus with Thomas Morstead

One of the great things about Mardi Gras is that it serves as a gathering point. People have “their spot” and you know where to find them. And there are the annual house parties along the route. After Katrina, this was the only way some people had to find each other after having been washed away.  When I was Pussyfooting in Muses, I knew where to look for friends and neighbors. Float riders send out notes to their friends letting them know which float they’ll be on and which side they’re riding – sidewalk side or neutral ground side – so they can give them special throws or shower them with beads. We come together at Mardi Gras, we find each other. Continue reading

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Filed under Carnival, Charity, Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, Mardi Gras 2015, parade, the Saints

Pussyfooting in Krewe of Muses

This was my second year Pussyfooting in Krewe of Muses and it was amazing! Between the sisterhood, the non-profit work and the resources available through the organization, I have plenty of reasons to love being a Pussyfooter but I’d be lying if I didn’t say that parading in Muses is reason enough. Muses is one of the ever-increasing number of female Krewes. Like many of the parades dance troupes, our organization strives to empower women of all kinds. After years of being terrified of large groups of women, I’m dancing in a group of over 100 women over-30 among over 1000 Muses Krewe members and it just feels good to be a part of it all. Continue reading

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Krewes of Druid and Nyx

Wednesday night, the final week of Carnival kicked off with the Krewe of Ancient Druids and Krewe of Nyx parades. Last year, we braved freezing rain but the skies were clear for this year’s festivities. Druids may have taken their ribbing of female parades too far with their Louisiana Purchase card (our version of food stamps) float displaying a sign reading, “Preferred Card of all Female Mardi Gras Krewes.” But the parade was fun, traditional and featured fun female dance troupes like Organ Grinders and Amelia Earhawts (who seem to be parading every day!). Continue reading

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Barkus, Allah and Femme Fatale Parades

Sunday’s parades enjoyed perfect weather. You can’t do it all during Mardi Gras so we picked the Krewes of Barkus, Allah and Femme Fatale parades. A local favorite, Barkus is the dog parade and this year’s theme was “BARK WARS: The Return of the K9″ so many of the costumes and floats celebrated Star Wars. For more about the hilarious history of the ever-growing parade and the special lunch the rescue-dog King and Queen enjoy at Galatoire’s, click HEREContinue reading

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Filed under Carnival, Charity, Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, Mardi Gras 2015, parade