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Louisiana Celebrates Mardi Gras!

An Insider’s Guide to parties around the State

Wherever you plan to celebrate Mardi Gras in Louisiana, book your hotel as soon as possible – hotels fill up fast.
Check your bucket, it’s time for Mardi Gras – the festival of all festivals! Joie de vivre unfolds all over the state in a variety of parties and parades, all colored in shades of purple, green, and gold. Below are the some of the most spectacular events happening around Louisiana. Mardi Gras day, or Fat Tuesday, falls on March 4 this year, so wherever you land, laissez les bon temps rouler – “let the good times roll!”

Alexandria
This central Louisiana city carries southern Louisiana Cajun culture to the north, with a lavish Mardi Gras celebration. The family-friendly festivities start on Friday, February 28, with the Hixson Autoplex Classic Cars & College Cheerleaders & Classic Cars Parade, and end on Sunday, March 2, with annual Krewes Parade, featuring New Orleans-style floats, high school and college marching bands, and local celebrities, all parading down Texas Avenue. In between is the annual Children’s Parade and the King Cake Party.

Baton Rouge
Mardi Gras celebrations start early in the state capitol, with fancy balls, huge floats, lavish costumes, live music, and all kinds of family-friendly entertainment. Each krewe hosts their own parade and special events. The Krewe of Jupiter rolls through downtown on February 15, followed the next morning by the Mystic Krewe of Mutts parade. On February 21, it’s the Krewe of Artemis parade, followed the next by Krewe of Mystique in the afternoon and Krewe of Orion in the morning. On February 28 is the Krewe of Southdowns parade, followed on Sunday by the arrival of the majestic finale, the Krewe of Spanish Town Parade.

Bayou LaFourche
More than just the spot where the Gulf Intercoastal Waterway and Bayou LaFourche intersect, this area in the southeast part of the state holds its own in Mardi Gras celebrations. Crawfish boils, parades, balls, and all sorts of revelry keeps this region rolling through the whole Carnival season. It starts February 8 with the Krewe Apollo Carnival Ball and ends on Fat Tuesday, with a number of lavish parades.

Houma
Houma’s two-week long party is one of the largest in the state. From February 21 to Fat Tuesday, Houma embraces its Cajun culture through variety of dazzling parades and events. It’s the second largest Mardi Gras event in Louisiana.

Lafayette
Local cuisine, live music, and dazzling parades highlight Lafayette’s five-day Mardi Gras bash. The festivities in the “capitol of Cajun Mardi Gras” begin on February 28 and roll out through Fat Tuesday. But if you can’t wait, the weekends of February 14 and 21 holds parades, ball, and other exciting happenings.

Lake Charles
Lake Charles festivities begin lavishly with a massive Twelfth Night celebration featuring a grand promenade of some 60 krewes. Thousands of revelers come to see the ornate costumes from all the local krewes – it’s the only place in the state where the public is invited to see this grand assembly of royal courts. Other events leading up to Fat Tuesday include parades, a Zydeco dance, a Gumbo Cook-off, and Children’s Day.

Shreveport
Northwest Louisiana showcases its Mardi Gras in Shreveport, beginning with the Twelfth Night Celebration, which draws some 400,000 revelers. On February 22, Mardi Gras season kicks off in earnest with the King of Centaur parade. Colorful events fill the schedule all the way up to Fat Tuesday, including the Krewe of Gemini parade, with its colorful throws and floats, and the family-friendly Krewe of Highland Parade.

New Orleans
The Big Easy is the Mardi Gras celebration, no doubt. From its lavish floats and equally dazzling krewes to Mardi Gras Indians parading through the side streets and thousands upon thousands of revelers young and old dressed in costumes from the elegant to the outrageous, this is the party of the year. The festivities begin on February 15 and reach a spectacular climax on Mardi Gras day. In between are dozens of parades, balls, parties, live music, and food.

For more information, visit LouisianaTravel.com.

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