Parades, floats mark Fat Tuesday in New Orleans

NEW ORLEANS - People across New Orleans Tuesday are marking the culmination of the Mardi Gras season with elaborate floats, eccentric costumes and marching bands.

See Full Article

Mardi Gras is the city's biggest tourist attraction, and thousands of people have converged on the city in recent weeks to see the elaborate parades, floats, marching bands and dance groups that wind through the city's streets.

WHAT ARE THE BIG PARADES?

The day kicks off with the Krewe of Zulu parade put on by the Zulu Social Aid & Pleasure Club, a historically black organization in New Orleans. Their parade dates back to roughly 1910. Then the Rex Organization, which dates back to 1872, will take to the streets. Rex's history is closely tied with Mardi Gras traditions. For examples, Rex's colours - purple, green, and gold - have become the symbolic colours of Mardi Gras as well. After Rex comes two truck parades, also along St. Charles Ave. and that marks the end of the major parades in the city until next year.

WHAT KIND OF THINGS CAN PEOPLE CATCH?

Riders on the floats, who generally wear masks, throw beads or other specially made trinkets to people along the parade route. Families line up early along the side of the street or on the median - called the neutral ground in New Orleans - to get a good seat. Families often make specially designed ladders with seats attached on top for young children to sit in so they're better positioned to catch things. One especially prized "throw" are the coconuts given out by members of Zulu. The coconuts have been hollowed out and had the outside hair removed before they're specially decorated with glitter or elaborate designs. They generally are not thrown from the floats but rather gently handed off to lucky bystanders.

WHAT ELSE HAPPENS?

There are other events and Mardi Gras traditions taking place across the city. The North Side Skull & Bone Gang gathers early in the morning to wake local residents on Fat Tuesday. They dress as skeletons to remind people of their mortality. The Mardi Gras Indian tribes are another tradition in the city. Members of the tribes spend months preparing elaborate costumes resembling Native American dress and on Fat Tuesday they travel through various neighbourhoods, chanting and dancing to songs passed down through generations. And while much of the city's Mardi Gras activities are family-oriented, in the French Quarter many people will be partying and celebrating into the evening. After the celebration and revelry of Fat Tuesday is over, Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent, a solemn period of penance and spiritual renewal for many in this largely Catholic city.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • John Kelly says Trump's positions on issues are evolving, 'even the wall'

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- U.S. President Donald Trump's chief of staff says Trump has evolved on many issues since the campaign. John Kelly says in an interview with Fox News host Bret Baier that "there's been an evolutionary process that this president's gone through" on issues ranging from Afghanistan to his promised Southern border wall. Source
  • Woman at centre of social media storm says no one told her how to dress

    Canada News CBC News
    The woman at the centre of a social media storm surrounding the use of her image says the conversation was misinformed from the start. A Facebook user noted the woman's appearance in a Government of Canada advertising campaign bore a resemblance to the Disney cartoon character Pocahontas. Source
  • Kinder Morgan says Trans Mountain project could be a year behind schedule

    Canada News CBC News
    Kinder Morgan Canada is projecting that the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project could be a year behind schedule as it continues to encounter permitting delays. The estimate is three months further behind from the company's last estimate in December, and now potentially puts the $7.4-billion project in service by December 2020, depending on regulatory, permit and legal approvals. Source
  • Tillerson says Kim Jong Un must 'tell me he wants to talk'

    World News CTV News
    PALO ALTO, Calif. -- U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson voiced confidence Wednesday North Korea will eventually negotiate with the United States, saying China's co-operation with a U.S.-led pressure campaign was starting to affect its reclusive ally's thinking. Source
  • Missing Ont. woman's body found; police say man arrested in her death

    Canada News CTV News
    HAMILTON -- Police say they have located the body of a missing 29-year-old Hamilton woman and arrested a man in connection with her death. Hamilton police say Holly Hamilton was reported missing by her family on Monday. Source
  • British lawmakers back Brexit legislation, but bill faces scrutiny from pro-EU upper house

    World News CBC News
    British lawmakers voted in favour of the government's legislative blueprint for Brexit on Wednesday, marking a victory for Prime Minister Theresa May over political opponents who want a softer approach to leaving the European Union. But the legislation will now face scrutiny from Parliament's largely pro-EU upper house, where May's party does not have a majority, which will intensify efforts to force a rerun of a 2016 referendum, and water down or even stop the divorce. Source
  • Trump says Russia helping North Korea skirt sanctions

    World News CBC News
    U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday Russia is helping North Korea get supplies in violation of international sanctions and that Pyongyang is getting "closer every day" to being able to deliver a long-range missile to the United States. Source
  • Grid shuts down after plane clips power lines near Alberta town

    Canada News CBC News
    Thousands of people in and around the central Alberta town of Didsbury were without electricity for about four hours Tuesday after a small plane knocked out power lines. RCMP say a single-engine Piper PA-28-180 Cherokee was coming in to land at the Olds-Didsbury Airport sometime after 8 p.m. Source
  • New trial ordered for N.S. sex worker who says she stabbed man in self-defence

    Canada News CTV News
    HALIFAX -- Nova Scotia's highest court has ordered a new trial for a sex worker convicted of assault for stabbing a client she said was sexually assaulting her. The woman had been convicted for stabbing Douglas Barrett in the back in his Sydney, N.S. Source
  • SeaRose shut down after Husky reprimanded for iceberg close call

    Canada News CBC News
    The C-NLOPB has suspended operations for Husky's SeaRose FPSO because of how it handled an incident with a too-close iceberg last March. "The SeaRose FPSO should have disconnected and sailed away from the threatening iceberg. Source