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Mardi Gras Indians – Super Sunday 2019

Super Sunday is easily one of my favorite days of the year as many of the Mardi Gras Indian tribes step out to show off their stunning suits of beads and feathers. I’m always humbled by the craftsmanship and dedication that goes into the staggeringly beautiful suits our neighbors spend the year carefully designing and crafting with elaborately beaded panels often portraying tales of battle and loss. Weighing up to 150 pounds and costing $3000 or more, the suits portray wildlife or a 3-D version of the Taj Mahal or even a tribute to things that “Ain’t dere no more” like the Jax brewery and the Saints “Dome patrol.”

The big surprise this year was the women. Queen Tahj of the Golden Eagles tribe created a gown rather than a suit. She worked her grandmothers earrings and brooches into her sequin top and her long skirt was beaded with the figures of women and children encircling her to represent her community Continue reading

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Filed under Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, history, Mardi Gras 2019, parade

Mardi Gras Indians Super Sunday 2015

This was my 6th Mardi Gras Indians Super Sunday and it still shocks my senses. Music swirls with the smell of grilled meats as everyone gathers at A.L. Davis Park to see the Indians’ elaborately crafted suits which weigh up to 150 pounds, cost up to $5000 (though I’ve heard $9000 once) and can take up to a year to design, construct and bead. When I moved here in 2009, the tribes were still fighting  for their right to a permitted parade. This year, I spotted Mayor Mitch Landrieu shaking hands with police parade escorts before things got rolling. Continue reading

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Filed under Culture, decorations and costumes, festival, free events and lagniappe, history, Mardi Gras 2015, parade

French Quarter Fest 2014 – Saturday

With the weekend in full swing, all of the over-20 stages and dozens more food booths opened throughout the Quarter for day 3 of French Quarter Fest. The first day, we parked ourselves in front of the Abita Stage and watched masters of their craft all day. Friday, we enjoyed all that again as well as watching well over 100 children take the stage throughout the day.  Saturday, we hit every corner of the Fest – from the Mint to the Aquarium and from Bourbon Street to the river.

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Filed under Charity, Concerts, Culture, decorations and costumes, festival, free events and lagniappe, Local Cuisine, the Saints

Mardi Gras Indians 2013

There are so many things to love about this city and many of them can only be found here in New Orleans. Topping the list of marvels seen nowhere else in the world are the Mardi Gras Indians parading on Super Sunday. HBO’s Treme exposed these amazing craftsmen to the public but there’s nothing like watching the wind in the plumes and the glint of sun on beads as they dance and chant accompanied by drum beats. Tribes come from Uptown and Downtown to peacock for the crowds and war for who’s the “prettiest.” The upside to all the recent media attention is that the parade now has an official route with police escorts and permits. The downside is that now gobs of people with a camera or iPhone or iPad or phone  crowd around the Indians like paparazzi on Lindsey Lohan. Continue reading

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Filed under Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, history, Local Cuisine, parade