Sunset at Prien Lake Park

Sunset at Prien Lake Park

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The Mystery of Mardi Gras

Dear Amy in Pittsburgh,

Mardi Gras . . . where to begin. I, too, prior to moving to Louisiana, thought Mardi Gras was a parade in New Orleans, the night before Lent starts. But oh, no. SO no. Mardi Gras is a celebration lasting several weeks. The festivities always start on Jan. 6th and end the night before Lent starts, which is variable, this year February 16th. These several weeks are filled with various assorted merriments; parades, parties, costumes, gumbo cook-offs, chicken runs (from what I can tell, a chicken is let loose, and a bunch of kids try to catch it. ??? I think this is mostly in rural parts of LA.), trail rides (on horseback), King Cakes, beads, etc. Folks decorate their houses in the traditional Mardi Gras colors; purple, gold and green. And it's not just in New Orleans. It's the whole state! Louisiana is the only state in the country where Mardi Gras is an official holiday. No mail, the banks are closed, the kids are off TWO days of school. It's nuts. But it is interesting. I still haven't figured the whole thing out, but I can tell you, it's bigger than Christmas. I wrote a blog or two on Mardi Gras with some photos last year around this time, if you want to look in the archives.

Thanks so much for following the blog. And thank you for all your prayers for my family last year. God heard every one of them.


beverly said...

Angie, I think you did a good job of giving a thumb nail sketch of Mardi Gras. All of us transplants learn a great deal about Mardi Gras the first year we are here in SW Louisiana. We've been here since 1981 and I am still learning things about all the many celebrations. Mardi Gras and Contraband Days are the bigggies. See you Thurs. I hope. If not, see you Sat. at BWG.


Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for the information on Mardi Gras. I really wanted to know more about it and felt that you would explain it without making me feel ignorant. Also I could not get this answer through google. Can we keep this a BIG secret from my beer drinking, party loving twenty some year olds? They think it is only on Fat Tuesday and therefore this lack of truth limits the window of oppurtunity for them to attend this "euphoric" celebration. Though at their age they think they know it all, you have proven to me they do not. Yippee! Again thank you for this answer and I will look into your blog archives to find out more information on Mardi Gras. - Amy

Angie Kay Dilmore said...

You're welcome, Amy. I looked back through the archives myself and found a couple posts, 1/6/09, and one in Feb. when Eric was in the hospital. But no photos. I thought I remembered posting a photo of a king cake, huge down here and only sold/eaten during Mardi Gras, but I couldn't find that. Oh well. Maybe a future post.