Tag Archives: dancers

Irish Channel Parade 2017

The Mardi Gras parades just ended and already St. Patrick’s festivities have begun. Time again for floats and throws, dance troupes and walking krewes. The major difference is the occasion. And the green. Green beers, green wigs, green beads and glittery green beards abounded. Throws included Irish Spring soap, anything shamrock-shaped and fresh cabbages for soup.

We go to the parade every year but this year attended some of our friend’s parties as well. The spreads included Irish dishes along with crawfish and other local favorites. Continue reading

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Krewes of Pontchartrain & Choctaw

Saturday, the weather couldn’t have been more perfect for parades. Sunny and mid-70’s. Though the day promised to be amazing, the crowds were manageable since the NBA All Stars events have filled our hotels and party venues with people who aren’t here for Carnival. (We wore our Pelicans gear in solidarity – I went with the Kind Cake Baby). Krewe of Pontchartrain kicked us off for the first of five parades. The purple-and-white-clad women of Dance Connection led the Cajun Indians & Cowboys Riding Club and royalty floats. The roller-skating Big Easy RollerGirls and dancers from Dance Innovation and the Muff-A-Lottas got the crowd cheering. The many school marching bands included Saint Katharine Drexel Prep, Xavier University, Kipp Central City Academy, Pierre A. Capdau Charter School, Dolores T. Aaron Academy and Joseph S. Clark Prep. (PHOTOS) Continue reading

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Mardi Gras Is Coming!

Every year, just as the rest of the nation is winding down after the 1-2-3 punch of Thanksgiving-Christmas/Hanukkah-New Year’s, we in New Orleans are just getting started. The festivities begin on Twelfth Night with the Phunny Phorty Phellows riding the streetcar down St. Charles, heralding the start of Carnival season. The night is also Joan of Arc’s birthday which is celebrated with a parade through the French Quarter. Though not everyone attends events that day, most offices (and many homes) commemorate the season with King Cake. In the last few years, King Cake has become the focus of parties with people bringing cakes from their favorite bakeries and sampling them all.

In our home, Twelfth Night’s passing means turning the Saints’ Who Dat wreath into a Mardi Gras wreath and switching the tree decorations from Christmas to Carnival. Continue reading

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Irish Channel Parade

The Irish Channel St. Patrick’s Day Club has held a mass and parade for over 60 years. Rerouted due to construction, the over-1400 (often drunk) paraders drew a straight line through the city but still managed to be spread out and entertainingly-less-organized by the time they hit our spot. Wearing black suits with green accessories (many in kilts), walkers exchanged silk flowers for kisses from women and children. Floats toss cabbage, carrots, Moon Pies,  Lucky Charms and Irish Spring soap in addition to the traditional throws of beads, toys and cups. Continue reading

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Easter in NOLA

Easter in New Orleans means many things and, as usual, we had to miss events like the 100th running of the Louisiana Derby and the Historic French Quarter Parade, in order to make our events starting with brunch at the Red Fish Grill. On our way down Bourbon Street, we passed the line for the first seating at Galatoire’s. I love all the men in their seersucker suits and straw hats and the women in floral dresses with fancy Easter bonnets – just like when my mom was a girl. At the front of the line were two folding chairs holding tattered men who’d clearly been paid to hold a place in line – a tradition nearly as long as the line.  Continue reading

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Krewes of Babylon, Chaos and Muses Parades

Last year, I had very little time to luxuriate in Mardi Gras madness. Django Unchained was ramping up to arrive on Ash Wednesday and I was traveling and working hard to prepare for filming. This year, the movie is out and it’s a hit – #1 globally 3 weeks in a row, 2 Golden Globe wins and 5 Oscar nominations including Best Picture. I can hardly believe I’m a part of it. But between the movie and my new book, Know Small Parts: An Actor’s Guide to Turning Minutes into Moments and Moments int a a Career, I’m again traveling and working hard during Mardi Gras. Continue reading

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Krewes of Nyx and Ancient Druids

Though the last 2 weeks have been a very big adventure, I’ll admit I’ve missed the simple joy of hanging out with neighbors, dancing to marching bands and collecting a haul of plastic treasure. After a break to host the Super Bowl, Carnival began again last night and the city turned out despite the constant rain. First up was Krewe of Ancient Druids. Founded in 1998, the krewe honors the Celtic priests who acted as mediators between the people and their gods and nature. Their krewe is fairly small with never more than 200 members and secrecy shrouds their membership. Continue reading

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