In 2020, the COVID pandemic shut New Orleans down on March 14th – just as local St. Patrick’s (Week) festivities were starting. The Irish Channel St. Patrick’s Day Club‘s Irish Channel Parade was cancelled when the riders and walking krewes had already purchased thousands of silk flowers, beads, toys, and fresh cabbages, potatoes, carrots and Ramen Noodles – ingredients for stew. My family filled a closet with Irish Spring soap. Other had to deal with crates of Moon Pies and single-portions of Lucky Charms.
The 2022 parade may have included some recycled throws (and possibly stale cereal), but I was glad to see they also included the 2020 Grand Marshall & Colleen who never got a chance to roll and greet the city. Continue reading
Fat Tuesday – Mardi Gras in French – splits the city into parade-goers and costumers. Parade-goers go to the Krewe of Zulu and Krewe of Rex parades, with diehards staying for the truck parade. We’re costumers so we spent the day wandering the French Quarter and Marigny taking in all the fun and fabulous ideas people came up with this year.
Last year was so quiet so it was wonderful to see all the colorful silliness and ingenuity on display. There were a lot of Ukraine costumes this year. Continue reading
I’ve explained before that there’s more than one Mardi Gras. On Lundi Gras (Monday before Fat Tuesday) we’re usually Uptown for the epic Krewe of Orpheaus Parade. The floats and bands are incredible and the weather promised to be mild for the nighttime parade. This year, we decided to attend the Krewe of Red Beans parade in the Marigny instead.
Founded in 2009, the Krewe of Red Beans began with a small group of school teachers and newcomers to New Orleans. Continue reading
The Krewe of Iris was established in 1917 – making it the oldest all-female krewe. Hand-decorated sunglasses are the Krewe’s’ signature throw and I caught 4 pair! Iris has gorgeous feminine, vividly-colored floats. My favorite is still the woman’s face with long, flowing, strawberry blonde hair – purple irises nested in the locks. Continue reading
The last Wednesday of Carnival is the kickoff to 7 straight days of parades – ending with Fat Tuesday (Mardi Gras). The weather was phenomenal – 75 and balmy – for The Krewe of Ancient Druids parade. Druids was founded in 1998 and honors the Celtic priests who acted as mediators between people and their gods and nature. Continue reading
The Krewes of Sparta and Pygmalion end the 5-parade Saturday on St. Charles. Sparta is a fairly traditional parade with masked riders – both on the floats and on the horses that lead the way. I was excited to see the flambeaux lighting the Avenue as they have since before the invention of electricity. It’d been 2 years since we’d been entertained by the guys twirling their flames for tips in any parades.
The floats featured phoenix’s and fairy queens. Crowds especially reacted to the dragons – one carried Continue reading