If you’re visiting New Orleans, you may want to spend the majority of your time exploring the French Quarter—and with so much to see, you definitely can. But you’ll get a special treat during Mardi Gras, when parades march right down the streets of the Quarter, so you won’t have to trek Uptown or to Mid-City to get a taste of the action. Let this list of French Quarter Mardi Gras parades help you plan your trip.
Krewe du Vieux
Arguably the most debaucherous of all Mardi Gras parades, Krewe du Vieux is known for its lewdness and tongue-in-cheek humor that pokes fun at all things New Orleans, from City Hall and local news to beloved trends and New Orleanians themselves. Fair warning: This is not a parade to bring your children to, and if you prefer to avoid scandalous references to the human body, you may want to pass on this one.
Rolling immediately following Krewe du Vieux, krewedelusion is the newer of the two satirical parades, and, like Krewe du Vieux, it is comprised of a number of smaller krewes dispersed throughout the parade. The inner krewes celebrate a range of cultural groups, trends, and icons, and together they make a fun-loving, whimsical parade that keeps the crowd laughing and anticipating the next group of merrymakers.
Krewe of Cork
Rather than featuring floats, Krewe of Cork is an entirely walking parade that focuses on—what else?—wine, food, and fun, the trio of passions held by all krewe members. Hundreds of wine-costumed marchers sip their favorite vino as they make their way through the French Quarter with custom-made goblets in hand and a brass band blasting in the background.
This parade is enticing for dog lovers who get to spend their afternoon admiring both the beautiful dogs of all shapes, sizes, and colors sauntering by but also their wide range of costumes, which venture from weird and wild to clever and adorable. Barkus is for a great cause too—all proceeds collected by the parade organization are donated to animal welfare groups.
Krewe of Bosom Buddies
Bosom Buddies and Breast Friends is one of the newest parade krewes that winds through the French Quarter, with members dressed in colored tutus, bras, and hats in accordance to that year’s parade theme. The tiny krewe features a few dozen women and a large handful of male marchers, known as “Breast Friends.” The prized throw? A hand-decorated brassiere.
If you’d rather stick to the French Quarter this Mardi Gras season, don’t worry—you’ll still have unique parades to enjoy without ever having to leave the neighborhood.
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