Posts tagged New Orleans
Financial difficulties killed another old line parade in Metairie, making the total three who called it quits in 2014. Another historic krewe, Thor and a new parade Atlantis, won’t roll in 2014 either. That is one poor record. Two of the three parades have been around for decades. Both were major Metairie parades for decades. They anchored their own nights and made Mardi Gras in Metairie a better place by far.
I tend to think something isn’t right in Jefferson. It’s not a poor parish, it should support the krewes and not lose them three in a year. Financial difficulties, or not enough members, is the stated culprit.
The West Bank portion of Jefferson isn’t thriving either. Another historic parade, Grela, has decided not to parade for 2014.
It says something not very good about Mardi Gras in New Orleans when the major parish bordering New Orleans, an economic force in its own right, loses three parades in a year. That’s a bit alarming and shocking. Parades cost more every year, and that will continue for the foreseeable future. When a parade cancels after the season starts, after Twelfth Night, it means they were either very close to coming off this year and just failed, or they just couldn’t accept the fact that their parade wasn’t destined to roll in 2014 and kept it a secret too long.
Another factor in the decline of parading in Jefferson is the lure of St. Charles Avenue as the premier parade route in the New Orleans area. Virtually all parades in Orleans Parish roll down St Charles (except Endymion, Krewe du Vieux, and Chewbaccus).
Slidell has all parades intact this year, and Orleans seems to be in similar shape.
It’s a fairly mild piece of legislation. For example, all ladders, regardless of height, now must be 6 feet from the street. This uniformity makes it easier for the police to monitor.
If you throw beads back at krewe members you will be fined $250 now. Some issues haven’t been decided yet. The toilet paper throw is back on the table with a different emphasis. Now, the unwrapped rolls are a ‘sanitation’ issue. That is a bull crap claim. I don’t think the vast majority of parade goers who catch a roll of paper actually use it. If they do, it better be clean. If it fell in the dirt or the mud it becomes garbage. The roll in the picture below has an outer wrap, keeping it hygienic.
If you place your private portable potty on public grounds, the company that rented you the unit will owe $250 to the City of New Orleans. That should cut down on the practice.
“Snap Pops” are now banned from Orleans Parish parade routes. The rationale here is the noise they create might scare horses. That’s not very true. Horses and mules that walk the parade route are very seasoned concerning loud noises. They have to be- parade routes are full of noise, from police sirens to marching bands with lots of trumpets and drums. I march with Krewe du Vieux, and the donkeys that pull our floats are approached by all sorts of parade watchers and loud noise dominates our parade. The donkeys behave beautifully throughout the entire route.
Also new this year- car riders can no longer perch themselves on the exterior of any auto. I guess the council considers this practice too dangerous? If you have a convertible, you are still allowed to have a single rider on the back of the open air car.
For 2014, you cannot set up a bbq in an intersection while the parade rolls. This makes some sense, since it’s hard to move a lit bbq for an emergency vehicle. Lots and lots of ladders are still allowed to set up in intersections. They can be moved rather quickly, but a lot of ladders would take a few minutes to move.
CARNIVAL 2014 Parades
Feb. 15. Krewe of Bilge. Slidell.
Feb. 15. Krewe of Mona Lisa and MoonPie. Slidell.
Feb. 15. Krewe du Vieux. French Quarter/Marigny, New Orleans.
Feb. 15. Krewe Delusion. French Quarter, New Orleans.
Feb. 16. Krewe of Perseus. Slidell.
Feb. 16. Krewe of Little Rascals. Metairie.
Feb. 21. Krewe of Cork. French Quarter, New Orleans.
Feb. 21. Krewe of Oshun. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 21. Krewe of Cleopatra. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 21. Krewe of Excalibur. Metairie.
Feb. 21. Krewe of Eve. Mandeville.
Feb. 21. Krewe of Atlas. Metairie.
Feb. 22. The Mystic Knights of Adonis. West Bank.
Feb. 22. Knights of Nemesis. Chalmette.
Feb. 22. Krewe of Pontchartrain. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 22. Krewe of Pontchartrain. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 22. Krewe of Choctaw. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 22. Krewe of Freret. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 22. Knights of Sparta. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 22. Krewe of Caesar. Metairie.
Feb. 22. Krewe of Olympia. Covington.
Feb. 22. Krewe of Titans. Slidell.
Feb. 22. Krewe of Pygmalion. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 22. Krewe of Chewbacchus. Marigny, New Orleans.
Feb. 23. Krewe of Dionysus. Slidell
Feb. 23. Krewe of Carrollton. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 23. Krewe of King Arthur and Merlin. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 23. Krewe of Alla. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 23. Krewe of Tchefuncte. Madisonville.
Feb. 23. Krewe of Barkus. French Quarter, New Orleans.
Feb. 26. Krewe of Ancient Druids. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 26. Krewe of Nyx. Uptown, New Orleans
Feb. 27. Knights of Babylon. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 27. Krewe of Muses. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 27. Knights of Chaos. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 28. Krewe of Hermes. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 28. Krewe d’Etat. Uptown, New Orleans.
Feb. 28. Krewe of Selene. Slidell.
Feb. 28. Krewe of Centurions. Metairie.
Feb. 28. Krewe of Lyra. Covington.
Feb. 28. Krewe of Morpheus. Uptown, New Orleans.
March 1. Krewe of NOMTOC. West Bank, New Orleans.
March 1. Krewe of Iris. Uptown, New Orleans.
March 1. Krewe of Tucks. Uptown, New Orleans.
March 1. Krewe of Endymion. Mid-City, New Orleans.
March 1. Krewe of Isis. Metairie.
March 2. Krewe of Okeanos. Uptown, New Orleans.
March 2. Krewe of Mid-City. Uptown, New Orleans.
March 2. Krewe of Thoth. Uptown, New Orleans.
March 2. Krewe of Bacchus. Uptown, New Orleans.
March 2. Krewe of Napoleon. Metairie.
March 3. Krewe of Proteus. Uptown, New Orleans.
March 3. Krewe of Orpheus. Uptown, New Orleans.
March 3. Krewe of Hera. Metairie.
March 3. Krewe of Zeus. Metairie.
March 4. Krewe of Zulu. Uptown, New Orleans.
March 4. Krewe of Rex. Uptown, New Orleans.
March 4. Krewe of Argus. Metairie.
March 4. Krewe of Elks Orleans. Uptown, New Orleans.
March 4. Krewe of Crescent City. Uptown, New Orleans.
March 4. Krewe of Elks Jefferson. Metairie.
March 4. Krewe of Jefferson. Metairie.
March 4. Societe de Ste. Anne. French Quarter, New Orleans.
March 4. Krewe de Lune. French Quarter, New Orleans.
March 4. Krewe of Kosmic Debris. French Quarter, New Orleans.
March 4. Mondo Cayo. French Quarter, New Orleans.
Meg was my Mardi Gras soul mate, we went parading from the mid 70s for the next 35 years and really had a blast decade after decade. I was very fortunate that she was a kid magnet and we would take our kids and the neighborhood kids on Mardi Gras parade excursions night after night during the season. In the late 70s, we crashed the CAC’s Krewe of Clones.
Before there was KdV, there was its predecessor, Krewe of Clones. Clones grew directly out of the Contemporary Arts Center. The CAC ran the parade, and the parade staging area was the CAC parking lot on Camp Street. It was an arty, satirical parade from the start. I still have an original1984 Krewe of Clones T shirt with the theme Barbie & Ken go to the World’s Fair.
After watching the parade one year in front of the CAC, we noticed the CAC Parade Marshall was drinking heavily over the couple of hours it took the parade to leave the staging parking lot.
The next year, we hatched a plan to crash the parade with our own float, taking advantage of the Marshall’s inebriation. We decorated our VW van into an elephant float by dying some sheets gray, and constructing a paper mache trunk, ears, and tail.
The night of the parade, we drove our float into position next to the CAC. When the parade was almost out of the staging area, we took advantage of the loose formation conditions, and drove our float straight onto the route. The Parade Marshall waved us on. For the next few years, we morphed that old van into other animals, and continued to crash the parade until the Marshall ‘retired’.
For several years in the mid 1980s, we had our own float in the Tucks parade. We paid the Krewe $500 cash and rented a stake bed truck and built our our cheapo float and invited all our twenty or so out of town Carnival visitors and all the neighborhood children to participate in the parade down Napoleon Avenue and down historic St. Charles Avenue on a Saturday afternoon during Mardi Gras. See the photo immediately below. I drove most of the with some help, and Meg rode on the truck and in the cab with me. We had an amazing time!
We truly live in the age of the democratization of Mardi Gras krewes. No longer do you have to spend a thousand dollars or much more to participate in a Mardi Gras parade (Bacchus, Endymion, Muses). The Intergalactic Krewe of Chewbacchus charges around $40 to join. My own Krewe du Vieux is around $125. This is really a fantastic development, and it opens up the thrill of belonging to a krewe to so many more New Orleanians and regional folks.
Many of these alternative krewes cost nothing to join. If you show up in costume with a musical instrument while the Krewe of Kosmic Debris is rolling, you are in. If you have a fantastic costume, the Societe de Saint Anne will welcome you.
The Mystic Krewe of Barkus is another inexpensive krewe, and it’s unique- You need a dog to participate. Barkus is a lot of fun- New Orleans is a very doggy city, and we really do get attached to our four legged friends.
Regular krewes hire float builders to build their parades. Alternative krewes generally build their floats themselves, and over time may become very good at their efforts.
Many alternative krewes consist of sub-krewes. I belong to the Krewe du Vieux, and my sub krewe is the Krewe of Underwear. Other KdV sub-krewes- Comatose, Drips and Discharges, and Seeds of Decline.
The Krewe of Cork has grown into a very substantial entity. Founded in 2000, the KoC has grown into a world-famous Mardi Gras and wine industry phenomenon. Krewe members gather on selected Fridays, usually the first Friday of each month, at restaurants throughout the area for T.G.I.C.D. (Thank Goodness It’s Cork Day).
The krewe’s two main events of the year are its Mardi Gras parade day festivities, and participation in the New Orleans Wine and Food Experience Royal Street Stroll. Throughout the year, the Krewe of Cork invites members to wine dinners and other special occasions, such as road trips and wine tastings.
Then there’s Better Than Ezra’s Krewe of Rocckus. Begun in 2011, Rocckus was formed to allow BTE’s fan base a way to celebrate Carnival with the band. Rocckus includes concerts, a brunch, second line parade, private parade viewing and a cruise on the Creole Queen.