Image

3:06 PM / Friday January 22, 2021

8 Jan 2021

Pandemic-era Mardi Gras: No big crowds, but plenty of cake

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
January 8, 2021 Category: Coronavirus, Coronavirus Posted by:

ABOVE PHOTO: In this Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2020, file photo, Mondo Kayo parades down Chartres Street during Mardi Gras, in New Orleans. A subdued Carnival season begins Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021, after the coronavirus pandemic put an end to the crowd-heavy balls and street parades that draw thousands of people to the city every year. (AP Photo/Rusty Costanza, File)

By Rebecca Santana

ASSOCIATED PRESS

NEW ORLEANS — A subdued Carnival season begins Wednesday after the coronavirus pandemic put an end to the crowd-heavy balls and street parades that draw thousands of people to the city every year.

The Mardi Gras season always starts on Jan. 6 and ends on Fat Tuesday, which this year falls on Feb. 16. The season is usually marked by extravagant balls and parades where costumed riders throw trinkets to the mobs of people packed along the parade routes. The coronavirus has put an end to those large events. But that has not stopped notoriously creative New Orleanians from coming up with socially distant ways to celebrate.

The Krewe de Jeanne d’Arc  is a club that annually pays homage to the fallen French hero with a parade through the French Quarter on the official start of the Carnival season. This year, the krewe is hosting a “Tableaux de Jeanne d’Arc,”  where onlookers will drive by various “tableaux” — a French term for “living pictures” — that will include stations of costumed revelers sparring as knights, sharpening their swords and feasting at a grand fireplace with a pig roasting in the background.

Image

“Life as usual is gone, so we had to look for different ways of doing things this year,” said Antoinette de Alteriis, one of the club’s captains.

The Phunny Phorty Phellows, a group that usually gathers Jan. 6 to mark the beginning of the season with a costumed party on a street car, is also altering its plans. Usually throngs of people gather at the facility where the street car starts its journey to see the group off, but this year people are asked to disperse along the street car route and watch from there instead.

But people can still eat cake — king cake that is. The sweet cakes, which are decorated with the official Carnival colors of purple, green and gold, are only to be eaten starting on Jan.6. 

In Mobile, Alabama, dozens of parades, balls and other events also have been canceled. The city on the Gulf of Mexico calls itself the birthplace of Mardi Gras since celebrations began there a few years earlier than in New Orleans.

Coastal Alabama typically begins its observances later in January than New Orleans, meaning the current coronavirus surge could be easing by the time events were set to start. But multiple organizations began announcing cancellations last month to protect the health of members and revelers.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter

Leave a Comment

Recent News

Sports

Baseball legend Hank Aaron passes away at 86

January 22, 2021

Tweet Share Pin Email According to reports, legendary baseball player Hank Aaron has passed away in Atlanta...

Stateside

Trump impeachment to go to Senate Monday, launching trial

January 22, 2021

Tweet Share Pin Email By MARY CLARE JALONICK and LISA MASCARO WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy...

Entertainment

Norah O’Donnell: ‘Journalism is more important than ever’

January 21, 2021

Tweet Share Pin Email ABOVE PHOTO: CBS shows Norah O’Donnell, host of the new “CBS Evening News...

Color Of Money

New world, new business: 5 ways small businesses are adapting to COVID

January 21, 2021

Tweet Share Pin Email BPT COVID-19 has irrevocably altered the way that we do business. Some small...

Go With The-Flo

Sherri Shepherd recently kicked off her second A-list partnership with HealthyWage

January 21, 2021

Tweet Share Pin Email ABOVE PHOTO: Sherri Shepherd (Photo: Joe Seer / Shutterstock) By Florence Anthony Quarantine...

Politics

Trump impeachment to go to Senate Monday, launching trial

January 22, 2021

Tweet Share Pin Email By MARY CLARE JALONICK and LISA MASCARO WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy...

The Philadelphia Sunday Sun Staff