Mardi Gras Krewe Queen
Mardi Gras Krewe Queen
 

Mardi Gras

The Mardi Gras season begins February 2, 2018 and continues through Fat Tuesday/Mardi Gras Day, February 13, 2018.

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, February 2 & 3, 2018.  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

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

Rhythm on the Route - The Mardi Gras Battle of the Bands in Jefferson Parish is an exciting event held throughout the Mardi Gras season during the parades in Metairie.  Middle school & high school marching bands "battle it out" as they march along Veterans Memorial Boulevard and "show-off their skills" to a panel of judges who determine a 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winner!  

Rhythm on the Route

Bands earn bragging rights, trophy & a banner along with prize money:
1st Place Winner - $3,000
2nd Place Winner - $2,000
3rd Place Winner - $1,000

Bands may compete in multiple Metairie parades throughout the season.  The program is sponsored by Jefferson Parish District 5 Councilwoman, Jennifer VanVrancken, who continues the tradition started by Jefferson Parish Councilwoman, Cynthia Lee Sheng.  This program offers the opportunity for marching bands to showcase their talents and earn much needed dollars for their programs, as well as provides the public with top-notch entertainment during the carnival parades. Marching bands interested in applying, please contact the JCVB office at 504-731-7083 or 877-572-7474, or email Tricia Cook, Sales Manager.

 

2018 MARDI GRAS PARADE SCHEDULE
                                                                             

KREWE OF LITTLE RASCALS SUNDAY January 28, 2018 12:00 PM

KREWE OF EXCALIBUR

FRIDAY

February 2, 2018

7:00 PM

KREWE OF ADONIS SATURDAY February, 3, 2018 11:45 AM

KREWE OF CAESAR

SATURDAY

February, 3, 2018

6:00 PM

KREWE OF CENTURIONS FRIDAY February 9, 2018 7:00 PM

KREWE OF ISIS

SATURDAY

February 10, 2018

6:30 PM

KREWE OF NAPOLEON SUNDAY February 11, 2018 4:30 PM
KREWE OF ATHENA SUNDAY February 11, 2018 5:30 PM
KREWE OF PANDORA SUNDAY February 11, 2018 6:30 PM

KREWE OF ARGUS

TUESDAY

February 13, 2018

10:00 AM

KREWE OF ELKS TRUCKS

TUESDAY

February 13, 2018

FOLLOWS ARGUS

KREWE OF JEFFERSON TRUCKS

TUESDAY

February 13, 2018

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 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':

Krewe of Excalibur:

The Krewe of Excalibur parades along Veterans Memorial Boulevard in a safe, family 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. This year the parade will be on Friday, February 2, 2018.

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.

Membership Application

Special Corporate Rider Information/Application

 

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