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My Mardi Gras Blog for 2003 is an attempt to give an idea what Mardi Gras in New Orleans is like.  Do not seek "Girls gone Wild" here.  Lots of other places for that. That said, do not be a prude as you look here, you may be astonished.  If you see someone you know, look the other way. 

Other SonC Mardi Gras Pages are at :



CLICK ON ANY IMAGE FOR A LARGER VIEW.  (It is often worthwhile.)

The All-Nighters

Fat Tuesday Morning 6:15 am.   I head to the French Quarter on the Magazine Street Bus to photograph the all-nighters.  Mostly waiters and restaurant staff on the bus with me.


At Midnight, Mardi Gras will be over.  This morning, hundreds of people slog through Bourbon Street trying to stay awake and use their time drunkly.  Some are still happy, most look real tired.

People dance inside the Hustler Club, but this guy's partner is a big garbage bag.

Reloading the ammo. It takes lots of beer to grease up Mardi Gras. Many beer trucks around.  Garbage trucks and Porta-Potti cleaners are here too.

At least some attempt  hitting the trash bin. The city once measured the success of Mardi Gras in the garbage index, by the sheer weight of debris.  Then the breweries went to aluminum cans, and they had to recalculate the totals.

The Maskers

As daylight arrives, so do the real carnival goers.  You can tell them apart because the drunken crowd doesn't mask.  Also, these people are fresh and ready to have fun.  Maybe a couple Bloody Mary's already, but definitely happy. Here's Elvis's former son-in law with some colorful demons.

Mickey Mouse Club; what cute faces those mice have!
Some people come to the quarter to make a buck. Naked Cowboy is one. He plays various tunes, all with the same theme; "Like a Naked Cowboy."  People (usually women) get their pictures taken with him, and stuff tips into his boots.
This Goth chyck was on the riverbank at 7 am, all dressed up, and ready to go. Where's Kyle?

Bloody Mary in hand, these two head for Canal street with ladders and umbrellas to watch Zulu, Rex and the truck parades.

The Krewe of Cosmic Debris, one of my favorite marching groups.  I've shot pictures of them for the past five years, but  marched their whole route only once. 

Zany costumes, music and dancing draws me every time.
Lady with a red dress on
On Mardi Gras, I have access to a balcony between Jackson Square and Royal Street.  It is a major thoroughfare for maskers on the way to the fun and costume contests.
Law enforcement is highly visible, and it makes me feel safe at Mardi Gras

Some people just like to show off.

A giant bug decends into the crowd.  The wonder of these costumes! 

Resting, and getting a little snack.

The Gnome Goddess struts her stuff around the place where the fundamental Christian groups gather to save the crowd from sin.

Walking work of art.  Body painting has become quite a rage over the past few years.  A compromise between nudity and costuming.

Witness to his Lord  holds his preacher's speaker on his head to ward off demons.  Several mission groups come each year trying to shame people into behaving the way they want them to. Seems not to work.

Viking Queen!  Riding on the Magazine Street Bus, you may encounter costumes.  With a million people on Canal Street and the French Quarter, it is usually difficult to find parking so a ride on the bus is the easy way, and you might find opportunities.


House Parties keep some of us rabble off the streets!


My friends open their house to their friends. We  bring food, and beverage, and enjoy ourselves.  I've been enjoying Carnival with many of these people for more than 25 years.
Carlos unplugs another bottle of wine
Not only is there music outside, the civility of a Jazz quartet helps pass the time between parades.

Old friends, newer friends, people I love.
  Anytime music plays, they're dancing fools!