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Old 01-15-2009, 10:37 AM
 
Location: Hampton Roads, Virginia
160 posts, read 453,632 times
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My family will be in New Orleans from Feb 13-16. We're staying at a hotel on Poydras, a couple blocks up from St. Charles. We want to take in one of the parades while we're in town. We've done Barkus. What are your favorites for this weekend. We have a car so distance isn't an issue.

Thanks!
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Old 01-15-2009, 12:26 PM
 
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Pontchartrain, Sparta, and Pegasus, all starting Uptown on Saturday afternoon and into the night are your best bets. You can catch them Uptown or Downtown; they will easy walking distance from your hotel when they get downtown. Have fun.
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Old 01-15-2009, 02:07 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
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Not sure when Corps de Napoleon is, it's in Metairie, and it's a fabulous parade. Metairie generally has very family type crowds. Lakeside shopping center is a good place to park and watch.
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Old 01-15-2009, 02:17 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SouthernBelleInUtah View Post
Not sure when Corps de Napoleon is, it's in Metairie, and it's a fabulous parade. Metairie generally has very family type crowds. Lakeside shopping center is a good place to park and watch.
But why go out to Metairie when you are staying downtown close to the traditional parade routes. The first Mardi Gras weekend is mostly family oriented Uptown and Downtown, as well as in Metairie.
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Old 01-15-2009, 05:28 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
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I would not call the downtown crowdsat any parade "mostly family" but rather a mix of families and drunks of all ages. Of course, I've only been going to parades since 1950, so maybe I don't know enough yet.
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Old 01-18-2009, 09:41 AM
 
Location: Da Parish
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If you are looking for family friendly atmosphere you want to stick with either Uptown or Metairie. Downtown is can be a bit rough for those new to MG/New Orleans, but I would comfortably recommend the CBD area, (St. Charles Ave. from Lee Circle to Canal street.)

It will be crowded, (but where is it not for MG), and there will be people who have hit happy hour after work, but there are lots of people who get off of work have their families meet them there to catch the parades.

Personally, I like to stand around St. Charles and Poydras Ave. I enjoy the atmosphere in that area. One year there was an hour long delay on the parade and the NOPD opened the barricades and let a troup of cheerleaders into the street where they performed their routines. I doubt that would ever happen on Canal because the crowd atmosphere is different over there; lots of drunks from the Quarter so the NOPD have to play it tighter there.
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Old 01-21-2009, 07:17 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SouthernBelleInUtah View Post
I would not call the downtown crowdsat any parade "mostly family" but rather a mix of families and drunks of all ages. Of course, I've only been going to parades since 1950, so maybe I don't know enough yet.
I have caught parades downtown for many years. The first weekend of Mardi Gras the crowds downtown are fairly light and not particularly rowdy. You need to get out of Metairie more often. I've been to some Metairie parades and they have their share of drunks as well.
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Old 01-21-2009, 11:50 AM
 
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Originally Posted by domino View Post
I have caught parades downtown for many years. The first weekend of Mardi Gras the crowds downtown are fairly light and not particularly rowdy. You need to get out of Metairie more often. I've been to some Metairie parades and they have their share of drunks as well.
Worse Mardi Gras fight I ever saw was on the Severn neutral ground the one year we rode in the truck parade following Argus. We were stopped right in front of it as it started. Drunk wife with a baby carraige threw here beer can into her (I assume) husband's face while dropping the loudest "F-bomb" I can remember hearing for years. Unfortunately, the beer can ricocheted and clipped their child who was on his shoulders, so he "F"ed her right back and backhanded her across the face, so she ducked and drove right into him, knocking him off balance and the kid off his shoulders. He shoved her and sort of kneed her at the same time, and she went back into the carraige, flipping it and dumping the infant inside. By now a woman from the group next to them (equally intoxicated, as she staggered toward the two) was turning the air blue screaming at him because he wasn't quite through beating on the wife just yet. Husband One semi-turns and stiffarms Wife Two to the ground, leading to a flying leap from what I can only assume was Husband Two. It was a lovely four-way brawl of drunken, cursing suburbanites, surrounded by a ring of crying children for a moment of two before other members of Group Two started diving in and whalin' on Husband One. We were up on the truck screaming for the JPs, but they were busy talking to some twenty-something hotties down at the corner. They couldn't be bothered to move until a few members of the biker crew from the opposite side of the neutral ground decided to dive in in defense of Husband One, who was getting the you-know-what beaten out of him at this point. Then the JPs moved in with their sticks. Small children were underfoot everywhere, and all shared the Mardi Gras spirit.

But lest you think this wasn't a family atmosphere...it appeared that many of the participants were there as family groups...and they WERE all white...which is what the whole suburban FAMILY Mardi Gras stuff is all about anyway.
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Old 01-21-2009, 12:36 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
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I'm sorry you had to witness that. At least no one was shot, which has happened along the St. Charles route, and a block or so over. My multi-racial family prefers Metairie b/c it's easier to get to and it's more families. OTOH, we view parades from either along Veteran's or Bonnabel; we don't go to Lakeside. Maybe different crowds? And we were FAR from being the only "ethnic" group there.
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Old 01-21-2009, 01:40 PM
 
26 posts, read 144,555 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SouthernBelleInUtah View Post
I'm sorry you had to witness that. At least no one was shot, which has happened along the St. Charles route, and a block or so over. My multi-racial family prefers Metairie b/c it's easier to get to and it's more families. OTOH, we view parades from either along Veteran's or Bonnabel; we don't go to Lakeside. Maybe different crowds? And we were FAR from being the only "ethnic" group there.
Veteran's Blvd. in Metairie is easy to get to...if you're already in Metairie only a couple of blocks off of Veterans. Otherwise, prepare to sit in bumper to bumper traffic.

I've been at Bonnabel and Vets for weeknight parades...where the black leather bikers hang out outside the "Beer & Cigarette" store...the store that keeps the fifteen year olds' bellies full of beer without asking for ID. Of course, Mom's a couple of blocks down getting her daquiri buzz on and can't be bothered with where the teens are. Family stuff.

All I'm saying is if someone's coming all the way in from out of town and wants to experience Mardi Gras in New Orleans it seems pretty silly to send them out to the suburbs to get an Anytown, USA parade experience just because of some unnatural fear of Orleans Parish.

Tabbva, if you'd like your family to experience a New Orleans Mardi Gras parade, on Saturday and Sunday walk up St. Charles aways from Poydras, maybe a few blocks past Lee Circle and the Expressway for the day parades (Pontchartrain on Sat., Carrollton and King Arthur on Sun.) and then stroll back out to St. Charles and Poydras for the evening parades (Pygmalion on Fri., Sparta & Pegasus on Sat.). That way you're only a couple of blocks from the hotel, and Poydras near St. Charles is about as safe as it gets for a night parade. After all, this is the first weekend of Mardi Gras you're talking about, not the weekend right before Mardi Gras...which is the weekend all of the tourists from places like Iowa and Utah arrive in town to begin drinking until they throw up in our streets and for their wives to pull their shirts up. The first weekend is a local crowd, which means it's Mom or Dad or Mom & Dad getting dragged out to the parade route by their kids.

If, however, you feel for some reason that you'd be unsafe in the city, them by all means find your way out to Metairie so your family will know what parades are like in Cincinnati. LOL
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