began as a small party and parade among friends in 1972. Next weekend, the annual event will celebrate its 43rd anniversary, complete with multiple street parties, parades, drag shows and fundraisers — all to the tune of this year's official song: "Work Bitch
" (by everyone's favorite Louisiana girl, Britney Spears, who has a strangely British accent in this song).
This year's theme is "Under the Big Top: Welcome to the Gayest Show on Earth,"
and participants will show it off with the year's official colors: canary yellow, turquoise blue and pearl white.
Reba Douglas, who performs regularly at the Bourbon Street watering hole Lucky Pierre
's, is this year's Grand Marshal. Co-Grand Marshals are Chad Boutte and Aubrey Synclaire.
Each year, Southern Decadence chooses a non-profit to which it donates proceeds from its various events, and this year it's Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) New Orleans
To kick things off there's a VIP Gala benefitting PFLAG at the House of Blues
August 28. There'll be an open vodka bar, hors d'oeuvres, performances and a DJ, not to mention all the glittered shenanigans Southern Decadence is known for (in appropriate, official colors, of course), and about a million different annual events throughout the weekend to keep you dancing, drinking and letting it all hang out.
A full schedule for the weekend is below the jump. And a list of outrageous stories from Decadence past is here
, to get you excited.
Friday, August 29
7 p.m.- The Knights of Decadence Float Parade begins at Elysian Fields next to Washington Park.
9 p.m. - 2 a.m. - The Southern Decadence Block Party at The Phoenix
(941 Elysian Fields Ave.)
11 p.m. - Annual Official Southern Decadence Grand Marshals’ Drag Show with grand marshals of Southern Decadence's past at Golden Lantern
(1239 Royal St.)
Saturday, August 30
5 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. - The 10th annual Bourbon Street Extravaganza: a free outdoor concert at the corner of Bourbon and St. Ann Streets with performances by Sandy Anderson, Inaya Day, Waylon Payne and Jeanie Tracy.
Sunday, August 31
11 a.m. - A Southern Decadence street party at Golden Lantern.
2 p.m. - The 40th Annual Official Southern Decadence walking parade starts at the Golden Lantern.
4 p.m. - The 21st Annual Official Southern Decadence Bead Toss, sponsored by Ambush
magazine goes down at 828 Bourbon St.
9 p.m. - RuPaul's Drag Race
performers Willam Belli and Detox, plus the Southern Decadence Grand Marshals, perform at House of Blues.
Monday, September 1
2 p.m. - The 17th Annual Southern Decadence Survivors Outer Loop Bar Crawl, which begins with snacks at The Corner Pocket
, then goes on to Double Play
, Le Roundup and Voodoo Bar and ends with a BBQ at GrandPre's.