Smashing Boxes New Orleans is in the throe's of Carnival Season - a great time to network, make new connections, and have fun! For those of you in New Orleans, or making the trek for Mardi Gras, our friends at 504ward have shared some tips and must do's with us!
We’re in the home stretch! It’s been a long, exciting Carnival season and we’re just one week out from the big show! So, how are you going to celebrate these last seven days? Here's our list of tips, tricks, and must-sees between now and Fat Tuesday.
- Get a parade tracking app! Is a parade running behind? Is it delayed for rain? Or maybe you don’t want to leave your awesome Endymion party until you know, for sure, the parade is getting close. Download the parade tracker, and you’ll be able to keep track of where your favorite krewe is without leaving the comfort of your crawfish boil. And have you seen the City’s app, Routewise, yet? It’s got a tracker for parade routes, food vendors, and BATHROOMS. City of Yes, indeed!
- Speaking of bathrooms, use this handy guide to navigate the bathroom options along all the routes!
- Don't get hungry! There’s no reason to go out of your house without a plan for where you’ll be able to grab food and drinks. Here’s a list of 80 excellent spots along the route!
- Don't drive (if you don't have to)! Finding parking can be intense, and you don’t want to spoil your mood with a parking ticket. Grab your bike, or download the Blue Bike app. It’s cheap, easy, and way faster than trying to find parking near the parade route.
MARK YOUR CALENDAR
- The Mystic Krewe of Femme Fatale rolled this past weekend, but we're not done with the all-female krewes just yet! Turn out for Nyx on Wednesday. and get your mitts ready to catch a shoe at Muses on Thursday! In fact, before you do, learn about all the hard work that goes into making this most-coveted Carnival throw. Let a real Muse take you through the process!
- Get involved with a krewe for the first time this year! The Souper Krewe of Brōth hands out soup, and soup-related throws, during their Mid-City route that launches from the Hoot n’ Holler Inn ahead of Endymion on Saturday, February 23rd. They're looking to grow their ranks and are welcoming new members, even on parade day!
- Grab yourself some red beans and a hot glue gun to join the festivities during the Red Beans and Dead Beans parades on Lundi Gras! These parades feature some of the most creative costumes of the season! You can walk over from the annual Zulu Lundi Gras Fest to catch the action.
MARDI GRAS DAY:
- Wake up early on Fat Tuesday! Well before the sun comes up or any parades begin, head into the Treme to watch a tradition celebrating its 200th anniversary this year. The North Side Skull and Bones gang continues a tradition by singing, dancing, and ceremoniously knocking on doors as a way to remind people to avoid negative influences!
- Wake up a little less early, and you can catch Mayor Cantrell riding a horse in Zulu! If you're lucky, you may catch a few coconuts, as well.
- Head under the bridge at the intersection of Claiborne and Orleans! This is where you'll see Mardi Gras Indians gathering to celebrate in an area that holds historical significance for our city's African American community.
- Slip on your best wig and head to the Marigny to join the Society of St. Anne's walking parade! They kick off at Bud Rip’s at 10am and make plenty of stops as they mosey toward the French Quarter.
But our best advice? Do whatever you think will make for a safe and happy Carnival for you and those around you. It’s a special time of the year here, and we hope you enjoy every minute of it.If you are around for the week and want to discuss tech, design, human centered thinking, or just hang out with some cool Smashing Boxes folks, please let us know! Happy Mardi Gras!504ward is a nonprofit collaborative initiative aimed at bringing high skilled young professionals to NOLA. Their goal is to connect you to key people, events and opportunities and ensure that New Orleans is a place for you to thrive and grow. With a pro-New Orleans witty tone and no ads policy, their twice weekly e-mails highlight opportunities for civic and social engagement and leadership development, and often include special event discounts just for young professionals.