Posts tagged Muses

2015 Orleans Parish Mardi Gras Parade Schedule!!


We are roughly four months before Fat Tuesday. As we approach Halloween, the Mardi Gras drumbeats are getting louder. I’ve already heard a bunch from my own Carnival krewe, the Krewe du Vieux. We roll throughout the Marigny and French Quarter on January 31, 2015. I LOVE Mardi Gras and always have. Getting older hasn’t dulled my appetite for all things Carnival!

I used to see parades in all the surrounding parishes. I don’t anymore. I guess I don’t feel the need to dash around from parade locale to parade locale anymore. Seeing parades in Orleans, Jefferson and St. Bernard parishes in a single night was no biggie. Seeing the same parade in different spots

Rex Jester Float

Rex Jester Float

Day Date Krewe Route
Sunday January 6, 2015 Phunny Phorty Phellows Uptown Streetcar Route
Sunday January 6, 2015 Krewe of Jeanne d’Arc French Quarter
Saturday January 31, 2015 Krewe du Vieux Marigny/French Quarter
Friday February 6, 2015 Krewe of Oshun Uptown
Friday February 6, 2015 Krewe of Cleopatra Uptown
Saturday February 7, 2015 Krewe of Pontchartrain Uptown – Napoleon
Saturday February 7, 2015 Krewe of Choctaw Uptown – Napoleon
Saturday February 7, 2015 Krewe of Freret Uptown – Napoleon
Saturday February 7, 2015 Knights of Sparta Uptown – Napoleon
Saturday February 7, 2015 Krewe of Pygmalion Uptown – Napoleon
Sunday February 8, 2015 Krewe of Carrollton Uptown – Napoleon
Sunday February 8, 2015 Krewe of King Arthur Uptown – Napoleon
Sunday February 8, 2015 Krewe of Alla Uptown – Napoleon
Sunday February 8, 2015 Mystic Krewe of Barkus French Quarter
Wednesday February 11, 2015 Krewe of Ancient Druids Uptown – Jefferson
Wednesday February 11, 2015 Mystic Krewe of Nyx Uptown – Jefferson
Thursday February 12, 2015 Knights of Babylon Uptown – Napoleon
Thursday February 12, 2015 Knights of Chaos Uptown – Napoleon
Thursday February 12, 2015 Krewe of Muses Uptown – Jefferson
Friday February 13, 2015 Krewe of Hermes Uptown – Napoleon
Friday February 13, 2015 Le Krewe d’Etat Uptown – Jefferson
Friday February 13, 2015 Krewe of Morpheus Uptown – Jefferson
Saturday February 14, 2015 Krewe of Iris Uptown – Napoleon
Saturday February 14, 2015 Krewe of Tucks Uptown – Napoleon
Saturday February 14, 2015 Krewe of Endymion Mid-City
Sunday February 15, 2015 Krewe of Okeanos Uptown – Jefferson
Sunday February 15, 2015 Krewe of Mid-City Uptown – Jefferson
Sunday February 15, 2015 Krewe of Thoth Uptown – Henry Clay
Sunday February 15, 2015 Krewe of Bacchus Uptown – Napoleon
Monday February 16, 2015 Krewe of Proteus Uptown – Napoleon
Monday February 16, 2015 Krewe of Orpheus Uptown – Napoleon
Tuesday February 17, 2015 Krewe of Zulu Uptown – Jackson
Tuesday February 17, 2015 Rex, King of Carnival Uptown – Claiborne
Tuesday February 17, 2015 Elks Krewe of Orleanians Uptown – Claiborne
Tuesday February 17, 2015 Krewe of Crescent City Uptown – Claiborne
Baby Kong, Krewe of Bacchus

Baby Kong, Krewe of Bacchus

Baccasaurus float from Bacchus parade at Mardi Gras World

Baccasaurus float from Bacchus parade at Mardi Gras World










Annual Ode to Muses!!

Muses 2013

Muses 2013 Title Float

There is no competition when Muses hits St. Charles Avenue, in terms of original throws. There are a couple of different reasons for Muses’ unique throws. One the one hand they control all throws all members can toss. The krewe is rather large, at least 1,100 women.

On the other hand, they make the maximum amount of money on very expensive throws with small margins. The public benefits from these factors.

In 2013, I saw very few decorated shoes coming off the floats this year. Contrast this with my experience at the Zulu parade on Jackson Avenue. When the double deck floats arrived, I personally caught 5 coconuts in 10 minutes, then had to leave to make it to REX on time. If I had stuck around I would have caught a dozen coconuts from these double decker floats. Granted my costume was extensive for Zulu but for Muses I had my masculinity going for me.

Muses handed me lots of cool throws, I caught a powerful ring flashlight;a light up shopping bag medallion; a magnetic shopping list with pad and special marker; a reusable shopping bag, a collapsible flask with caribener; a heavy duty guide to the Makin’ Grocery floats that could double as a picnic blanket; shoe laces in a cool plastic test tube; koozies; kazoos; shoe bracelets; lariats; other medallions; shoe beads; coin purses, etc. It seemed relatively endless in terms of the variety of Muses stuff thrown off the floats.

Muses Coin Purse

Muses Coin Purse

Pussyfooters at Muses Parade

Pussyfooters at Muses Parade

Muses Shoe

Muses Shoe

This makes Muses a very high priced parade to ride in. I assume the dues is far less than the throws. By a wide margin. Again the public benefits from the wild variety of throws Muses throws.

Muses seems to pull marching organizations out of the wood work. No parade on St. Charles Avenue has more. They include the Pussyfooters; the Krewe of the Rolling Elvi;the 610 Stompers; the Camel Toe Lady Steppers; Disco Amigos; the Dead Rock Stars, and many more.

Muses High Heel Version

Muses High Heel Version

2013 New Orleans Mardi Gras Round Up!!!


The 2013 Carnival season in New Orleans was one of the warmest on record, I didn’t wear a jacket until the last couple of days of the season. The Super Bowl interrupted Mardi Gras this year, so parades were held before and after the 9 day break.

Had a rather tough time at the parades this year, my large group of parade goers had winnowed down over time to just me and my beloved wife. Now that she’s gone, I saw the parades by myself. That’s not much fun, and it’s kind of sad.

I still enjoyed myself when the parades rolled. I’m such a huge Mardi Gras fan,I couldn’t help myself. I love the atmosphere, the bands, marching groups, floats, etc.

So we’ll start with the King of Carnival, REX. I dress in purple, green and gold most Mardi Gras, and this year I had a felt frog hat that added a bit of mirth to my serious costume.

REX is an old line krewe that is composed of 3 circles of membership. The inner ring is old blue blood types, and the King and Captain come from that group. The middle ring is new money types. They can become officers, but that’s it. The outside ring is composed of anyone, more or less. If you are successful in life and give something back to the community, there is a good chance REX may have a parade spot for you.

The first two rings of REX are very haughty on the parade route. They only throw to pretty girls and children. The last ring of REX throws to anyone. They are just happy to be riding with REX and give throws to the male sex even!  Obviously, the sentiments laid out here are generalizations only.

REX looked grand, it’s the best looking daylight parade by far. The floats aren’t the huge ones that Bacchus, Endymion and Orpheus use, as the float chassis are build on very old wagon bodies, with wooden wheels on the floats!! I don’t know who repairs the wheels, the last wheel wright died a while ago, and I lost touch with the process.

REX Wooden Wheels

REX Wooden Wheels

REX Cyclops Float

REX Cyclops Float


Zulu rolled right at 8 am on Jackson Avenue on a beautiful Mardi Gras day.  Marlin Gusman was on horseback with a gaggle of sheriff’s deputies, Mayor Mitch Landrieu was also in the parade.

Zulu appreciates costuming, and if you have a funny aspect to your costume, that only helps. Zulu has some haughty riders, but most aren’t. When the double decker, double length floats arrived, they were handing out coconuts with a frenzy. I caught 5, gave away 2 on the spot, and one later. I don’t remember any double floats in the past handing down so many coconuts.

Zulu now color coordinates their coconut colors! If the riders wore orange gowns, their coconuts were painted the same color orange.

My 3 Zulu Coconuts on Bed at Home

My 3 Zulu Coconuts on Bed at Home

I had to leave Zulu at 9 am to go home to pick up the smart card for my camera, then off to REX. On the way I say a man and his son walking around near Zulu. They were having a tough time getting there, so I reached into my bag and gave them a nice Zulu coconut. You never saw such big smiles! I was happy to give them that coconut.

Proteus the night before was one gorgeous parade. They are a very old krewe, from the late 1800s. Proteus also uses wooden wagon chassis and wooden wheels from long ago.

Proteus' Comus Float

Proteus’ Comus Float


Muses is the biggest all female Carnival krewe in existence. The crowds turn out for Muses, since their reputation for new, novel throws has grown large. Their most unique and rare throw, the Muses decorated shoe throw, is highly sought after. I didn’t get any shoes this year, but got lots of other unique throws, including a Muses magnetic shopping list with pad, special marker,and erasable writing surface; Muses collapsible drink flask with carabiner; Muses shoelaces in a cool plastic test tube; Muses flashlight that flashes the Muses symbol (as in Batman and the Bat signal commissioner Gordon uses to get Batman’s attention); a Muses reusable grocery shopping bag; and a Muses bead catching net. The net was a pain at the parade, all the folks who received them waved them in everyone’s faces while trying to catch throws.

I noticed for several years that Muses only throws stuff with their logo on it. That means the krewe must buy all their throws from the krewe. That’s a very expensive proposition. Most other krewes require their members to buy some throws with their logo on it, but allow the members to augment their krewe purchases with generic, cheaper throws. I bet the Muses dues is less than the cost of purchasing all those krewe throws. I really don’t think the average Muses krewe member cares. To belong to Muses, is well, one of the more divine and sublime experiences in the New Orleans Carnival world.

Krewe du Vieux rolled very early in the season, moved back a week by the Super Bowl. Nevertheless, the first parade of the season had rather warm weather this year, As readers of this blog know, I’m in KdV, and I’m very partial to it.

All the reasons- the historic parade route, the donkeys, the brass bands, and the outright over the top ribald floats- have been covered in this blog numerous times. Yes, I love my KdV!!

2013 Krewe of Underwear Float

2013 Krewe of Underwear Float

KdV Underwear Float  Detail

KdV Underwear Float Detail

Roger Goodell, long time NFL Commissioner, made a statement alluding to the KdV float, the anti Goodell signage in stores,restaurants and bars all over town, and the voodoo dolls he’s been given. He claims none of that influenced his decision to lift Saints Coach Peyton’s suspension a couple of weeks early. We all know better!



Blaine Kern Faces Foreclosure, Continued Court Fight With Son

REX New Butterfly Float 2012

REX New Butterfly Float 2012

Since April, Blaine Kern Sr, Carnival legend and founder of Mardi Gras World, was heading down the slippery slope of foreclosure. Blaine Sr has been embroiled in a nasty law suit with his son, Barry Kern.

As readers of this blog already know, I always preach one axiom when discussing this case- never sue your parents, it won’t work out in the long run no matter what you believe at the time. This is a time honored axiom that can’t be overcome or changed.

When the first Super Parade was born in 1967 with Bacchus, who was the float builder who made Captain Augie Perez’s dreams come true? Blaine Kern Sr. He’s been the float builder of record for Rex, Orpheus, Endymion, Muses, Bacchus, Alla, and Caesar, all the Super Krewes of note in recent Carnival history

Traditional Jester Float of REX, the King of Carnival!

Traditional Jester Float of REX, the King of Carnival!

Blaine sought national accounts, and landed Disneyland and MGM as major clients, among other big businesses. He’s represented the great traditions of Mardi Gras in the best New Orleans tradition of service and quality. I personally helped grow it (Mardi Gras) into a billion-dollar industry, says 85-year-old Blaine Kern, nicknamed “Mr. Mardi Gras”. I’ve been doing this for 74 years.

The Algiers Point house he bought with his fourth wife, Holly Brown-Kern, is slated for the auction block in two months, according to a foreclosure notice filed this week by Orleans Parish Sheriff Marlin Gusman’s office.

The notice lists a May 3 auction date for the Abalon Court property in the Algiers Riverpoint subdivision. Whitney Bank sued Kern in January over a $283,849 debt on the house, which the couple bought five years ago for $290,000, according to public records.


Kern’s Movie Credits Used to Build Floats!!

Mardi Gras World
Mardi Gras World

This is the second entry that goes on both my blogs- Watchopp and my Mardi Gras blog as well. We can thank the Legislative Auditor‘s office for this one, they released the report that the Kerns used the movie tax credits to build floats in 2006 instead of their unfinished documentary, Blaine Kern’s Mardi Gras: Building of the Greatest Free Show on Earth. The Kerns own Mardi Gras World, a New Orleans institution. They build REX, Bacchus, Orpheus, Endymion, Muses, and Alla, among others.

Barry and Blaine Kern in Happier Times
Barry and Blaine Kern in Happier Times

Barry Kern’s huge response to the Auditor report states that the practices the Kerns followed were somewhat widespread at the time among live entertainment documentaries that applied for the tax credit during the same time period. Those productions include Jazz Fest, Voodoo Fest and Essence Fest. That’s pretty esteemed company for the Kerns to be keeping. I guess French Quarter Festival kept their nose clean on this live entertainment documentary mess. Good for them!!

Barry Kern thinks his dad, Blaine Kern Sr., notified the Legislative Auditor about the tax credit situation. That made Barry Kern very mad. If Dad’s objective was to make Barry mad, it worked. The Kern family is in the middle of well known legal battle for control of the Kern empire. Barry started the legal feud, and Blaine is doing his best to continue it. This is the juiciest, saddest public legal family battle we’ve seen in quite some time. My condolences to all involved.

Kern's REX Parade on Mardi Gras Day
Kern’s REX Parade on Mardi Gras Day

The big news in the case is at the end of February 2012, the Louisiana Appeals Court overturned the lower court and gave Kern Sr. back control. They threw out the deal the Kerns brokered with the key Mardi Gras Captains, and lifted the temporary injunction against Kern Sr.

That means the lawsuit, in which Barry Kern accused his father of ruining the company, will go back to Orleans Civil District Court for a full hearing.

Barry Kern now has 14 days to appeal the ruling to the full Fourth Circuit bench for a rehearing.  Otherwise, the case will be sent back for trial before Judge Kern Reese.

So if the elder Kern is back running the business, why would he contact the Legislative Auditor and draw attention to the possible misuse of tax credits? To embarrass Barry for sure is probably the only reason. The elder Kern oversaw the building of those floats, not his son, more than five years ago.

The Kerns’ movie was billed as a look at the history, design, building and production of Carnival and Mardi Gras floats, with a focus on the 2007 season, according to the Legislative Auditor’s report.

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