20 Days to Mardi Gras
There’ll be a single-question quiz at the end, so pay close attention. Yes, there will be a prize—for 10 people who leave a comment.
Costumes: I’ll be celebrating Mardi Gras long distance this year, stepping out with my guy for a wonderful Cajun meal wearing my custom made purple, green, and gold corset, (thank you Ginny Lind) carrying my parasol and a hankie, all the while dreaming about joining a Second Line.
Music: I don’t think of New Orleans without hearing the music. Mardi Gras Mambo is an iconic Fat Tuesday song recorded in 1954 by the Hawketts, a musical group of teenagers that included Art Neville. Chess Records released the R&B song, written in 1953 by Frankie Adams and Lou Welsch, and the Hawketts made it a hit.
As you listen to the music, compliments of themusicmenTV, see the sights of New Orleans at Mardi Gras. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L1fBDVNn1pU
Dance: What is Mambo? Move your body and your feet. Rock steps, side steps, points, kicks, and flicks of the feet. But the important movement involves your hips. Mambo means: Shake it! Here’s a video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XfasHf-M-cA
Parades: Krewes, Marching Bands, Dance Teams, Flambeaux Carriers, and more.
Historically, flambeaux carriers lead the way at night with blazing torches for revelers so they could see the Krewe parades. Now, not every parade will have them since some parades are during the day.
A krewe is a group of people who band together, some of them form formal organizations to host a Mardi Gras ball, put on a Mardi Gras parade with floats, and have social events during the year. For example, the Krewe of Cork members gather for a monthly wine tasting.
Parades color the streets in and around New Orleans: French Quarter, Metairie, Uptown, West Bank, Slidell, Madisonville, Mandeville, Chalmette, Covington, and Mid-City. Every weekend is a treat. This year, starting on Wednesday February 3rd, and every day until Fat Tuesday, February 9th, multiple parades can be viewed. You must get out of bed early to witness the Krewe of Zulu—coconut throws anyone? Zulu rolls at 8:00 am.
Oh, I almost forgot to talk about “throws.” They’re the crowning glory for revelers. Throws are the items each Krewe throws/tosses as parade-goers as the floats pass the throngs of crowds.
So from all of this love of music, food, tradition, history, and partying, you can see why Mardi Gras is really bigger than Christmas.
Now y’all know about NOLA’s rich parade traditions. If you look at only one thing on this post, please click on the link for the second line. Second Line is another exciting element of parades. It works like this: the First Line is the main brass band of a parade. (Usually a designated group with a parading permits.) Followers tag along while strutting to the music, twirling parasols, waving handkerchiefs and it’s called Second Lining. Musicians wanting to show their stuff, fall in line and play, too, adding an even richer musical sound.
AND there are Second Line parades that can happen on any day of the week and virtually anywhere. Seeing and hearing adds to the understanding, so check this out. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QpKiuVVXXeA
QUIZ: I promised a quiz and here it is: For many, Mardi Gras is equated with one thing.
So in the videos, there’s one thing you Don’t see. What is it?
Answer: Bare Boobs.
In the videos, nowhere did you witness a woman flashing her body parts. Mardi Gras is predominately a family-friendly event. Thankfully, that behavior is pretty much kept to Bourbon Street, and even then, it’s not encouraged.
Laissez les bons temps rouler!
P.S. I’m giving away 10 eBooks of Bayou Bound–A 2015 InD’Tale Finalist and SWA’s 1st Place in Romance winner. Leave a comment to be entered to win. The winners of the eBooks will be selected on Fat Tuesday, February 9th–a Mardi Gras throw. If you win, you will need to send me your email address to receive the book via Amazon.
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