Let the Count Begin: Six Months to Mardi Gras!

We may be in the midst of prime summertime, and there’s still fall and the whole holiday season ahead, but we’re getting ready and counting the days to one of the most exciting cultural events in the country. Yes, you guessed it.  Mardi Gras, the iconic Carnival celebration, is just six months away and thus it’s not too early to mark your calendars and make your plans for this incredible, weeks-long event filled with music, parades, costumes and the true spirit of the South.

In 2023, Mardi Gras lands on February 13.
We wanted to get the word out before your inboxes are completely full of haunts, harvests and holidays … because we feel compelled to remind you that all the fun of Mardi Gras extends well beyond New Orleans. We represent six destinations along the Gulf Coast of Alabama and Louisiana, all of which have a story-worthy (and family-friendly!) Mardi Gras celebration just waiting to be shared with you. (Please note that these websites will be updated with details in the coming months, so keep referring back to them as you work on stories.) 

Alabama
  • Mobile, Alabama (the true home of America’s first Mardi Gras!) 
  • Celebrating Mardi Gras 2022

    Even if you can’t make it down for Mardi Gras this year, there’s no reason to miss out on the fun. Here are our options for celebrating the holiday in person or from home. So start planning so you don’t miss out on the fun.

    Mobile, Alabama

    Mobile is THE birthplace of Mardi Gras in the United States, with the American celebration dating back to 1703. In this city, where MoonPies are the most coveted parade “throw” and beads hang from trees year-round, Mardi Gras is truly a way of life.

    Planned Events:

    A full listing of planned events can be found at Mobile.org. All events are subject to change.

    • The 2022 parade schedule extends from January 29 to March 1.
    • A tradition that started in 2021 is continuing to roll into the 2022 Carnival season. The Mobile Porch Parade is a socially distanced way for Mobilians to join in the fun by decorating their homes and registering to be on the official parade map. Everyone is invited to follow the “parade routes” – by way of foot, car or bike – at their leisure.

    Celebrate at Home

    • To help get you in the spirit of the season, Toomey’s Mardi Gras features one of the largest inventories of Mardi Gras supplies anywhere in the world. Headquartered in a 70,000-square-foot facility is overflowing with beads, costumes, masks, and decorations. And that’s just the start. They even have MoonPies.
    • Local women-owned business ellenJAY offers a seasonal Mardi Gras Combo Box, Inside are four beautifully decorated mask sugar cookies, four chocolate chip sammies with vanilla buttercream and Mardi Gras sprinkles, and four cinnamon teacakes. The 12-count combo box is $59.95.

    Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, Alabama

    Head to  Gulf Shores and Orange Beach and celebrate Mardi Gras on the beach.

    Planned Events:

    A full listing of planned events can be found at gulfshores.com

    . All events are subject to change.

    • Don’t miss the Orange Beach Mardi Gras Parade. Organized each year by the City of Orange Beach, this year’s parade is scheduled for Saturday, February 26.
    • They all love a parade. That’s why the city of Gulf Shores offers both land and sea parades on Mardi Gras With the oldest parading order in Baldwin County, the Gulf Shores Mardi Gras Parade will take place at 10 a.m. on March 1. Later that day, the Mardi Gras Boat Parade, organized by Lucy Buffett’s LuLu’s, sets sail. 

    Celebrate at Home

    • Possibly the most famous of all Mardi Gras dishes is gumbo, and we’ve got a great recipe to share. Excerpted from Lucy Buffet’s “Gumbo Love” recipe book, Summer Seafood Gumbo. Ignore the name, this gumbo is good year round.

    Coastal Louisiana

    Coastal Louisiana epitomes the Cajun French expression “Laissez les bon temps roulez,” or as we would say “Let the good times roll.” Historically, New Year’s celebrations overlap the Carnival season kickoff starting on the Epiphany (January 6) and continuing on through Mardi Gras beginning this year on Tuesday, March 1.

    Planned Events:

    A full listing of planned events can be found on each destination’s website. All events are subject to change.

    • Lafourche Parish is recovering from the impact of Hurricane Ida last summer, but Mardi Gras is giving residents of Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou some reasons to celebrate. Here’s a complete list of the festivities scheduled for this year.
    • Located a short 40 minutes from the French Quarter, St. Tammany Parish is home to such quirky and unforgettable Mardi Gras parades as the Carnival in Covington Parade on March 1.
    • In Southwest Louisiana, the famed Iowa Chicken Run, an event that winds its way through the small town of Iowa to collect ingredients for a celebratory gumbo, is scheduled for March 1.

    Celebrate at Home: