There’s a parade for everyone during Mardi Gras. Dog lovers should head to Krewe of Barkus, which is a parade of costumed dogs. If you like science fiction, then Chewbacchus (named after the Wookie in Star Wars) is a celebration of all things nerdy. The Krewe of Tit Rex puts on one of the most charming parades, as their members make miniature, shoebox-sized floats, pulling them along on strings. Krewe du Vieux is an adult, satirical parade.
The Orpheus, Bacchus, and Endymion parades feature the most elaborate and extravagant floats. Zulu, Rex, and Muses are also among the larger and best-attended parades. Zulu is a historic African-American krewe, and Muses is a more recent addition to Carnival, with its membership exclusively for women. The Zulu and Rex parades take place on Mardi Gras Day.
There’s an overwhelming amount of events, so pick and choose your favorites. A solid strategy is to attend some of the larger parades put on by the super krewes and some smaller or niche parades.
People set up early for parades, so stake out a spot and bring snacks and drinks with you. Dressing up is absolutely encouraged. It’s easy to get excited about throws, so be careful not to jostle nearby children or push others. Hydrate, wear sunscreen, wear comfortable shoes, and enjoy the community spirit.
Insider tip: Most of the large parades roll from uptown towards downtown along St. Charles Avenue, although Endymion moves through Mid City along Orleans Avenue.