History of Mardi Gras

Mardi Gras is an ancient celebration of spring and fertility.

It is a French phrase meaning ‘Fat Tuesday’, as it was celebrated the day before the 40 days of Christian Lent started.  Christans viewed it as their last chance to eat, drink, and celebrate until Lent ended on Easter Sunday.

Ancient "Fat Tuesday Run"
Ancient “Fat Tuesday Run”

The excess and debauchery of the Mardi Gras season really resonated with the people of New Orleans. By the late 1830s, New Orleans held regular street processions to celebrate Mardi Gras.

Mardi Gras Parade, Bourbon Street, 1936
Mardi Gras Parade, Bourbon Street, 1936

 Today, there are more than 60 parades held in the New Orleans area during the two weeks before Mardi Gras.

Mardi Gras on Boubon Street Today
Mardi Gras on Boubon Street Today
Krewe Parade
Krewe Parade

New Orleans loves Mardi Gras so much, they adopted the official colours of royalty for Mardi Gras: Purple for justice, Green for faith, and Gold for power.

Mardi Gras falls on Feb 28th in 2017 so we’re celebrating this year on March 4th, which is the Saturday after Mard Gras or Fat Tuesday.