Mardi Gras, Navarre Style!

 

When you hear Mardi Gras, what comes to mind? Beads? New Orleans? Bourbon Street? While those may be the first thoughts that pop up, Mardi Gras is so much more. When we moved here in 2003, I remember thinking, Why are we celebrating Mardi Gras? This isnt New Orleans! Little did I know. Mardi Gras is a Gulf Coast tradition!

For those who may not know, Mardi Gras actually has ties to Christianity in Europe. Mardi Gras or Carnival season is a prelude to Lent, the forty days of penance between Ash Wednesday and Easter Sunday. Traditionally, before Lent, Christians would binge on all the meat, eggs, and cheese remaining before the fasting began. In France, the day before Ash Wednesday became known as Fat Tuesday, presumably due to all that eating.

There is great debate in this area about the origin of Mardi Gras in the United States. While Louisiana claims to have the first Mardi Gras in 1699, Mobile, Alabama is recognized by many as the oldest celebration beginning in 1703. Regardless of its origin, Mardi Gras has spread throughout the Gulf Coast. From Tallahassee to Texas, people flock to the streets to celebrate the season.

The social groups in charge of Mardi Gras festivities are known as Krewes. In Navarre, the Krewe in charge of our parade is the Navarre Krewe of Jesters. For thirty-one years, they have organized and hosted the Navarre Beach Mardi Gras parade. I had the pleasure of speaking to a founding member this weekend, and he told me that back in 1986, when they held the first parade, there were 16 entries. This year, there are 65! It is a truly family friendly event; not like rumors of other Mardi Gras parades. For more information about the parade, please visit the Navarre Krewe of Jesters Facebook page.

If you are looking for the best way to view the Navarre Mardi Gras parade, look no further than Beach Rentals at Navarre! All of our condo rentals are along the parade route. You can watch from the balconies, or be down in the crowd in front of your unit. Best of all, you dont have to fight the traffic. Use the Quick Search feature on our website to view available units.

So no matter where you are, you can enjoy the traditions of Mardi Gras. Just grab some beads, eat some king cake, and Let the Good Times Roll!

 

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