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Answers to Blake Pontchartrain's Carnival quiz 

click to enlarge The Mardi Gras Fountain

Photo by Kandace Power Graves

The Mardi Gras Fountain

ANSWERS TO BLAKE'S CONFOUNDING CARNIVAL QUIZ 2017 (The questions were published in Gambit Feb. 14 and can be found online at

1. C. Comus
Comus, Carnival's oldest krewe, no longer parades, but you can catch a glimpse of his cup during the meeting of the courts of Rex and Comus on Mardi Gras night on WYES-TV.

2. B. Brother Martin
Though Arthur Hardy is a graduate of Warren Easton and involved in the foundation that now runs the charter school, he was band director at Brother Martin for 16 years. He published his first Mardi Gras Guide in 1977.

3. C. Mid-City
Mid-City's motto, pour la joie de vivre, was created by krewe founder Charles Bourgeois, who was its first king and also designed the krewe's familiar interlocking hearts crest.

4. A. Phunny Phorty Phellows
Originally formed in 1878 and parading behind Rex, the Phunny Phorty Phellows disbanded in 1898. The name was revived in 1981 by a group that boards a St. Charles Avenue streetcar on Jan. 6 to proclaim the start of Carnival season.

5. D. Elves of Oberon
The Elves of Oberon, a ball-only organization that debuted in 1895, held the first ball at the Municipal Auditorium on Feb. 9, 1930.

6. A. Alla
Blaine Kern's father, a sign painter and float builder, constructed floats for the first Alla parade in 1932. The younger Kern was recruited to build the krewe's parade in the late 1940s.

7. D. Barbara Eden
Eden, best known for I Dream of Jeannie, reigned as Argus Empress in 1975. Other stars to hold that title included Connie Stevens, Phyllis Diller, Diane Ladd, Shirley Jones and Loretta Swit.

8. C. Richard Dreyfuss
Dreyfuss backed out about a month before the 1992 Bacchus parade, citing a commitment to perform in a Broadway play. Actor Gerald McRaney, best known at the time as TV's Major Dad, was invited to reign that year instead.

9. A. Hermes
About a decade ago, Antoine's converted one of its front dining rooms into the Hermes Bar, featuring photos and memorabilia from the krewe.

10. B. Cynthius
Cynthius paraded from 1947 to 1951 but was the first to be televised by WDSU, the city's first TV station, when it began broadcasting parades in 1949, two months after it signed on the air. Other parades televised that first year include Babylon, Momus, Adonis, Cardonis, Venus, Proteus, Rex and Comus.

11. B. Lipstick
Queen Kong made her debut in the Bacchus parade of 1973, one year after King Kong. The Baby Kong float was added in 1982.

12. A. Le Krewe d'Etat
The krewe follows through on the play on words that goes into its name (think coup d'etat) by referring to its monarch as the dictator. The ruler's identity is never made public.

13. B. His Majesty's Bandwagon
This signature float always follows the Rex King's float and features a live band among its riders.

14. A. Booker T. Washington High School
King Zulu 1949 Louis Armstrong performed at the coronation ceremony held on Feb. 27, 1949 in the auditorium of Booker T. Washington High School in Central City.

15. D. Earl King
King wrote "Big Chief" and was present when Professor Longhair recorded the song in 1964. After Longhair left the studio, King recorded the song's whistle and lead vocals, which were meant for Longhair to come back and duplicate later. That never happened.

16. B. Jefferson City Buzzards
Founded in 1890, the all-male group of Buzzards parades four times a year, including on Fat Tuesday and a couple of weeks before Mardi Gras for their practice parade, which this year was Feb. 12.

17. A. Magazine and Julia streets
The rest of the route is unknown, but the first Comus parade began at Magazine and Julia streets at 9 p.m. on Mardi Gras, Feb. 24, 1857.

18. B. Bacchus
The post-parade Bacchus Rendezvous was held at the Rivergate for the krewe's first six years before it moved to the Superdome and, in 1990, the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center.

19. C. Cab driver
Johnson recorded "Carnival Time" in 1960 but never could make a living as a full-time musician. He told The Times-Picayune in 1985 that he also worked as a welder and went to A/C refrigeration school but ended up driving a cab for more than 20 years and performing every chance he got.

20. A. Rhonda Shear
Shear, host of USA Up All Night in the 1980s and now a successful entrepreneur with a line of women's intimate apparel, was Queen Endymion 1977.


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