Rex Duke™'s guide to the final week of parades
Gambit's Carnival expert Rex Duke™ previews the final weekend of parades Mardi Gras is A true sharing economy, as krewes, high school marching bands and walking groups all pitch in to entertain us.
8 a.m.UptownTheme: Stop the ViolenceFloats: 30King: Adonis C. ExposeQueen: Donna M. GlapionThrows: decorated coconuts and medallion beadsIn response to the deaths of children of Zulu Social Aid and Pleasure Club members, the krewe is highlighting a "Stop the Violence" message, which is included on cups and some beads. Proceeds from sales of the parade poster will be donated to Crimestoppers.
5:15 p.m.UptownTheme: Der Ring des NibelungenFloats: 20King: secretQueen: announced day of parade Throws: seahorse medallion beads, plush fish and seahorses, doubloons, cups, bracelets and lighted tridents, flambeaux and beadsThe krewe celebrates Richard Wagner's Ring Cycle, and floats depict its famous pieces, "Flight of the Valkyries," "Rhinegold" and "The Destruction of Valhalla." The krewe also has replicated its 1882 king's float.
11 a.m.UptownTheme: Okeanos Salutes American IconsFloats: 21King: Michael Charles BiermanQueen: Caroline Ann LundgrenThrows: Crawfish trays, krewe logo sand pails and cups, doubloons in eight colorsThe parade theme celebrates famous Americans, including Presidents Abraham Lincoln and John F. Kennedy, industrialist Henry Ford and entertainers Louis Armstrong, Elvis Presley, John Wayne and Marilyn Monroe. New Orleans icon Vince Vance serves as grand marshal.
10:45 a.m.West BankTheme: N.O.M.T.O.C. Salutes Icons of the SeventiesFloats: 29King: Wilfred Dennis Jr.Queen: Jada Cymone WashingtonThrows: Jug Man, lighted Jug Man and krewe crest beadsThe parade theme celebrates icons and iconic pop culture from the 1970s, including Jimi Hendrix, Thelma Houston, ABBA and Soul Train. The procession also honors the state championship football teams from Edna Karr and L.B. Landry-O.P. Walker high schools.
Hermes6 p.m.UptownTheme: announced day of paradeFloats: 30King: secretQueen: announced at krewe ballThrows: plush spears, pillows, cups, doubloons and beadsThe krewe often chooses a theme from the ancient world or literature and doesn't announce it until the day of the parade. The krewe introduces a new signature float depicting St. George the dragon slayer.
Babylon5:30 p.m.UptownTheme: announced day of paradeFloats: 24Sargon: secretQueen: announced day of paradeThrows: theme T-shirts, headbands, doubloons and lighted krewe crests, streetcars and medallionsThe krewe doesn't announce its theme until the day of the parade, but floats titled "Golden Buddha" and "Golden Calf" promise a rich vision of iconic figures. Signature floats include the "Babylonian Barge" and the "Hanging Gardens of Babylon."
Druids6:15 p.m.UptownTheme: announced day of paradeFloats: 19Archdruid: secretThrows: Druid wands and hats, cups, doubloons and medallion beadsThe Mystic Krewe of Druids' themes typically feature the group's dry and sometimes cryptic wit. The organization is secretive: The identity of the Archdruid is not revealed and the group has no court or ball.
A history of the Rex bulletin
In the mid-1870s, newspaper coverage of Carnival season began to augment descriptions of the pageants with small, black-and-white engravings of the float designs. The evolution of these printed images magically paralleled the increasing grandeur of their subjects, and in 1882, the first "broadside" sheets appeared.
Dog in a costume? Dancing cop? Dude cooking chicken?
The first big weekend of Mardi Gras parades starts Friday night, and Gambit's Rex Duke has something for you to do while waiting for the first float to pass: play Mardi Gras Bingo. Download the attached PDFs (each card is different) and print them out (or tear them out of this Sunday's edition of Gambit).
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When asked about his work inking 3-D tattoos, Vinnie Myers doesn't highlight the orange fish with two dozen scales that twists and writhes up the shoulder of the man featured on his website. Nor is it the Maori hook that pops in bright green, emphasized by texture and shadowing.
The event recognized achievement in dance, opera and music
Dancer Lula Elzy accepted a lifetime achievement award and artists were recognized for 2016 performances in opera, dance and classical music at the Tribtue to the Classical Arts luncheon at the Hotel Monteleone Jan. 27. The Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra (LPO) won Best Classical Music Performance and Best New Classical Music Performance.