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Sydney AU Mardi Gras shake-up for 2010


Posted in: International Daily News
By GayNZ.cpm Daily News Staff

Sydney’s legendary Mardi Gras Parade and Party, traditionally held on the same night, are now planned on different weekends for 2010.

The Parade is scheduled for Saturday 27 February, then the Party will happen the following weekend – Saturday 6 March.

“In a move designed to make Mardi Gras an even more attractive event in the calendar of Sydneysiders and the world’s gay travelers, New Mardi Gras plans a more concentrated two-week festival, curated in tandem with its many arts partners,” explains Festival executive producer Danielle Harvey.

“A review of major arts festivals around the world showed they were typically two week festivals. By moving to two weeks we will be able to create a much more impactful experience for both local and international audiences.”

As part of the shorter festival, Sydney’s popular Fair Day will be held on Sunday 21 February, and the Harbour Party by the Opera House will be on the day after the Parade, on Sunday 28 February.

The Festival’s official 2010 theme will be ‘Mardi Gras’ History of the World’, aiming to incorporate LGBT people’s stories through the ages and provide a gay take on some of the great moments and figures of history.

Sydney AU Mardi Gras Festivities

Sydney AU Mardi Gras Festivities

To get WDSU Parade Tracker updates on your cell phone, text “follow parades” to 40404


Check out They have gps units on the first and last floats of all the parades and text the info live via twitter to your phone.  You can always know where the parades are while they are running and you are running after them. To get complete details how to turn this service on and off, go to:

Getting the BEST LOOK at Parades


A comfortable spot at the rear of the parade crowd allows a more complete view of the floats and better blending of band sounds. In the front, the excitement is more intense, the throws more plentiful, and the paraders’ costumes and expressions visible. Either choice has its merits.  Comfortable positions in front are very hard to come by at the more popular parades.

Avoid Canal Street near the French Quarter, unless the most crowded viewing area is sought.

Go to the suburbs, where the crowds are often smaller. Endymion, Bacchus, Rex, Zulu and Orpheus are the most crowded parades, drawing the most suburbanites, locals, and tourists. Few city people and tourists travel to the suburbs for parades.

See a parade on one of the less crowded days. On St. Charles Avenue,  the most crowded days are the second weekend of the parade season, which is the weekend before Mardi Gras Day. Ancient Druids roll on Wednesday, February 18, and the crowds should be very manageable. Proteus, one of our favorite parades,  is rather sparsely attended, since the night it rolls is both right after the biggest party weekend of the year and the day before Fat Tuesday.

Attend a parade in threatening weather. Many people stay home. Very occasionally, parades do cancel so check radio or web updates when necessary.

Once at a parade of your choice- avoid intersections, especially major ones. Walk until the crowd thins out.

Head to double back areas, if any. Stand on the neutral ground to see the parade twice, coming and going.

Watch near the start and ending areas. Crowds are often thinner at these areas, but this isn’t always so.

One reason people ride/walk in Mardi Gras parades


One of the most unusual aspects of participating in a Mardi Gras parade is the dynamics of the eye contact between parade goer and parade participator. As the pp goes by the pg, their eyes meet. The pg, for just the moment the float passes, wants a throw. They want something from you momentarily. Many people want something badly.  This passes a little bit of power from them to you. Through the course of the whole parade a lot of power accumulates in you from all this eye contact from people wanting something you have. To some degree, the bigger the crowd, the longer the feeling lasts, though it never lasts as long as as week in my experience.

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