Planning on going to Mardi Gras? Here are a few things you should know! HMDesignStudioUS

Everything you need to know about Mardi Gras!

We have created a Mari Gras Guide for you that includes the following:

  1. What is Mardi Gras
  2. History of Mardi Gras
  3. Popular Gifts for Mardi Gras
  4. Things to Do in New Orleans during Mardi Gras
  5. Popular things to do while in New Orleans

What is Mardi Gras: 

Mardi Gras is a carnival celebration that occurs annually in many cities around the world, most notably in New Orleans, Louisiana, in the United States. The celebration typically takes place during the weeks leading up to the Christian liturgical season of Lent, and it features parades, costumes, music, and other festivities. The name "Mardi Gras" is French for "Fat Tuesday", which refers to the practice of indulging in rich foods before the start of the Lenten fasting period. Mardi Gras is known for its colorful parades, and is often associated with beads, masks, and costumes.


History of Mardi Gras:

Mardi Gras, or "Fat Tuesday," has roots in ancient Roman and Christian traditions. The ancient Romans celebrated a festival called Saturnalia, which was a week-long period of feasting and gift-giving in December. This celebration was later incorporated into Christian tradition as part of the Carnival season, which precedes the start of Lent.

The first recorded Mardi Gras celebration in North America took place in what is now Mobile, Alabama in 1703, organized by French settlers. The celebration spread to New Orleans in the late 1700s, where it became an annual event. The first recorded parade in New Orleans was in 1837, and the first Mardi Gras krewe (a group that puts on a parade or ball) was formed in 1857.

Over the years, Mardi Gras in New Orleans has grown into a major cultural event, attracting thousands of visitors to the city each year. Today, Mardi Gras krewes in New Orleans put on elaborate parades and balls, and the event is known for its colorful costumes, music, and partying.

Mardi Gras is celebrated in different forms around the world, such as in Brazil, where it's widely known as "Carnival".


Some popular gifts for Mardi Gras include:

  1. Mardi Gras beads: These colorful, beaded necklaces are a staple of the Mardi Gras celebration and make for a fun and festive gift.

  2. Masks: Feather, sequin, and glitter masks are traditional Mardi Gras wear, and can make a great gift for someone planning to attend a Mardi Gras parade or party.

  3. Doubloons: Aluminum or plastic coins that are thrown from floats during the parades, they often have the krewe or the year on them and are considered a collector's item.

  4. Mardi Gras-themed clothing: T-shirts, hats, and other clothing items with Mardi Gras themes, such as the fleur de lis or the colors of Mardi Gras (purple, green, and gold) make great gifts. Check out our unique selection of Mardi Gras Shirts and Tanks! 

    King cake: This traditional Mardi Gras pastry is a ring-shaped cake made with cinnamon and sugar, and often decorated with purple, green, and gold icing.

  5. Party favors like cups, napkins, and plates with Mardi Gras designs, can be perfect for someone hosting a Mardi Gras party.

  6. Mardi Gras music and movies, if you want to bring the party home.



Things to Do in New Orleans during Mardi Gras:

New Orleans is a popular destination during Mardi Gras, and there are many things to do and see during the celebration. Here are some suggestions:

  1. Attend a Mardi Gras parade: The highlight of Mardi Gras is the parades, featuring elaborate floats, marching bands, and costumed revelers.

  2. Visit a Mardi Gras ball: Many Mardi Gras krewes (organizations that put on parades and balls) host formal balls, where you can see members in costume and enjoy live music.

  3. Experience the street parties: Mardi Gras is known for its lively street parties, where you can find live music, food, and drinks.

  4. Collect beads and trinkets: Parade-goers throw beads, doubloons, cups, and other trinkets from the floats to the crowds, it's a tradition to catch as many as possible.

  5. Visit the Mardi Gras Museum: Learn about the history and traditions of Mardi Gras in New Orleans.

  6. Enjoy the local cuisine: New Orleans is famous for its delicious seafood, Cajun and Creole cuisine, and beignets, enjoy some traditional dishes during your visit.

  7. Take a guided tour: There are several guided tours available that take you to the best spots to see the parades, parties and other Mardi Gras events

  8. Visit the French Quarter: Even if you're not a party person, the French Quarter is always a good idea. It's a unique place to walk around and take in the atmosphere.

  9. Explore the art and culture: New Orleans has a rich art and culture scene, with many galleries, museums, and performance venues, it's worth taking a look.

  10. Be safe and have fun: Mardi Gras can be a wild and exciting time, but it's important to stay safe, plan ahead, and have a good time responsibly.

Popular things to do while in New Orleans:

New Orleans is a vibrant and historic city known for its rich culture, delicious food, and lively music scene. Here are some fun things to do in New Orleans:

  1. Visit Bourbon Street: This famous street in the French Quarter is known for its lively nightlife, bars, and music clubs.

  2. Take a stroll through the French Quarter: This historic neighborhood is home to many of New Orleans' most famous landmarks, including Jackson Square and St. Louis Cathedral.

  3. Enjoy the music: New Orleans is famous for its jazz, blues, and brass music, and there are many venues around the city where you can catch a live show.

  4. Take a swamp tour: Experience the beauty and wildlife of the Louisiana bayou on a guided tour through the swamps.

  5. Visit the National World War II Museum: Learn about the history of the war and the role that New Orleans played in it.

  6. Visit the Garden District: This historic neighborhood is known for its beautiful antebellum homes and lush gardens.

  7. Try the local cuisine: New Orleans is known for its delicious seafood, Cajun and Creole cuisine, and beignets.

  8. Take a street car ride: Experience the city in a unique way by riding the street car and explore different neighborhoods.

  9. Attend a parade or festival: New Orleans is famous for its festivals and parades, such as Mardi Gras, Jazz Fest, and French Quarter Festival.

  10. Visit the Audubon Zoo: See a wide variety of animals from around the world, including gorillas, lions, and elephants.



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