The Mardi Gras season begins February 22, 2019 and continues through Fat Tuesday/Mardi Gras Day, March 5, 2019.
Mardi Gras is known as "the biggest party on Earth" and Jefferson Parish is inviting you! Spanning over two sides of the Mississippi River, the East Bank and the West Bank, Jefferson Parish offers Mardi Gras fun wherever you may be located. Come and experience the sites, sounds, food, music, parades and of course, the BEADS in this family friendly celebration of Mardi Gras. An asset to the carnival season is the annual Family Gras event taking place the first weekend of carnival in the metropolitan area. Family Gras is a three-day festival of concerts with local and national acts, local cuisine, an art market, kids zone, various sponsor booths and the pageantry of the carnival parades!
Mardi Gras was brought to Louisiana by early French settlers. The first record of the holiday being marked in Louisiana is 1699. The starting date of festivities in New Orleans is unknown, but an account from 1743 notes that the custom of Carnival balls was already established by that date. Processions and masking in the streets on Mardi Gras Day were sometimes prohibited by law, but were quickly renewed whenever such restrictions were lifted or enforcement waned. In 1833 Bernard Xavier de Marigny de Mandeville, a rich plantation owner, raised money to fund an official Mardi Gras celebration.
On Mardi Gras of 1857 the Mystic Krewe of Comus held its first parade. Comus is the oldest continuously active Mardi Gras organization and started a number of traditions (for example, the use of floats in parades) and is considered the first Carnival krewe in the modern sense. War, economic, political, and weather conditions sometimes led to the cancelation of some or all major parades, especially during the American Civil War and World War II, but a celebration of Carnival has always been observed in the city.
Today, many krewes operate under a business structure; membership is basically open to anyone who pays dues to have a place on a parade float. In contrast, the old-line krewes use the structure of the parades and balls to extend the traditions of the debutante season in their social circles.
The Colors of Mardi Gras
The traditional colors of Mardi Gras are purple, green, and gold. These are said to have been chosen in 1892, when the Rex Parade theme "Symbolism of Colors" gave the colors their meanings.
- Purple - Justice
- Green - Faith
- Gold - Power
2019 Mardi Gras Parade Schedule
|Krewe of Little Rascals||Sunday||February 17, 2019||12PM|
|Krewe of Excalibur||Friday||February 22, 2019||7PM|
|Krewe of Adonis||Saturday||February 23, 2019||11:45AM|
|Krewe of Caesar||Saturday||February 23, 2019||6:30PM|
|Krewe of Kings||Sunday||February 24, 2019||5:30PM|
|Krewe of Centurions||Friday||March 1, 2019||7PM|
|Krewe of Isis||Saturday||March 2, 2019||6PM|
|Krewe of Athena||Sunday||March 3, 2019||5:30PM|
|Krewe of Pandora||Sunday||March 3, 2019||6:30PM|
|Krewe of Argus||Fat Tuesday||March 5, 2019||10AM|
|Krewe of Elks Truck||Fat Tuesday||March 5, 2019||Follows Argus|
|Krewe of Jefferson Trucks||Fat Tuesday||March 5, 2019||Follows Elks|
Parade Routes - Watch the pageantry of Mardi Gras along one of Jefferson's routes. Whether you are heading out to catch a parade on the East Bank or West Bank of Jefferson Parish, we have you covered with accurate full color routes. Click here for the complete list of Jefferson Parish parade routes.
YOU can ride in a parade! There is room for you and your group in Jefferson Parish carnival! Many of Jefferson's 'krewes' invite you to join them as they parade. Basic membership information can be found by clicking the links where applicable below. Some 'krewes' have special guest packages/rates where an individual or group's costume and throws are included along with load-in of all throws to your assigned float! Check listing below for participating carnival 'krewes'.
Rolling down the streets as Metairie’s largest male and female parade, the Krewe of Centurions offers a unique Mardi Gras experience. The krewe is a family-friendly organization, offering fun and exciting events. Our formal celebration ball, the casual nights out and every event in between bring the enthusaium of Mardi Gras all year long, and it doesn’t stop there! From our signature throws to our masked men and women in wigs, our members experience the thrill of riding in an exceptional parade. Bystanders alike get to have a touch of the fun, as they are entertained by a parade with an “in-town” feel with our old line themed floats and catch an array of throws coming their way. They are always looking for men and women who are interested in joining their krewe, and want you to be a part of the fun and experience the excitement that only the Krewe of Centurions has to offer! See their membership application below.
The Krewe of Excalibur parades along Veterans Memorial Boulevard in a family-friendly atmosphere that millions of people have enjoyed over the years. Over the years they have catered to this atmosphere by creating a fun time with bands or dance groups between every float, throwing items specially designed for children, like youth t-shirts, stuffed castles and hand decorated shields, and by having family related socials throughout the year. They are also the first parade of the season, so it’s very well attended by the public.
The Krewe of Excalibur’s unique theme takes Mardi Gras to the medieval. Their krewe celebrates the best traditions of New Orleans, King Arthur, Queen Guinevere and the Knights of the Round Table. If you know the difference between a knight and a lord, a squire and a steward, and a lady and a maiden, you’re already a member. Their club is known for lavish, over-the-top court costumes.
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