Hello my CLDA and industry colleagues,
As you may know by now the CLDA will be holding its Final Mile Forum 2023 in New Orleans. Plan to attend now because that is only a couple of months away. Come join us February 9 through February 11, 2023. This is one FMF that you should not miss. Of course, all attendees will benefit from the great educational content, the networking opportunities and for all the programs the CLDA will be offering at this year’s gathering. It is always a great benefit to mingle amongst your industry peers to learn of their struggles and successes and of course, to share your own. However, this year I am also hoping all will attend for another reason… and that is, to enjoy the hospitality and charm that my hometown has to offer. Come experience the CRESCENT CITY CULTURE… 2023
Welcome to New Orleans!
Over the next 8 weeks be on the lookout for the CRESCENT CITY CULTURE where I will be sharing some interesting facts about New Orleans through articles, pictures, and my own take on what I call the Ambience of New Orleans.
You will get to know a little bit about the history of the city, places to eat and drink, and things to do. You will learn about our culture … like our music and food to name a couple. It is my hope that by the time you get your first whiff of grilled oysters after stepping off the plane, our local vibe will be instilled in you, and you will in fact be an honorary New Orleanian!
If there is ever a time to come to New Orleans, it is this year. WHY? Well, let me jump right into our first edition of the CRESCENT CITY CULTURE
Happy Mardi Gras!
♫ Down in New Orleans where the blues was born, it takes a cool cat to blow a horn ♪ Ah yes, those opening lyrics to the quintessential sound of Mardi Gras, sung by The Hawketts, “The Mardi Gras Mambo,” gets both locals and visitors alike in the mood to dance in the street. You can get your Mambo Grove on here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L1fBDVNn1pU
Yes, my friends, it will Mardi Gras time down in New Orleans when you are here for the FMF 2023. Friday February 10th is the first night of the major parades that will lead up to Mardi Gras Day. And three will roll that evening passing about five blocks from the hotel.
How much do you know about “Fat Tuesday” and the Mardi Gras Season? Tuesday, February 21 is Mardi Gras Day in 2023. That day marks the end of the Mardi Gras season, and the beginning of Lent is the following day.
The Mardi Gras season is actually determined by two Christian holidays, Christmas and Easter. The season varies in length because Christmas is a stationary holiday, whereas Easter is not. Easter is the first Sunday following the first full moon after the Spring Equinox. Mardi Gras Day will be 47 days prior to Easter Sunday. So, Easter can fall on any Sunday between March 23 and April 25, thus making Mardi Gras Day fall on any Tuesday between February 3 to March 9.
As for the beginning of the Mardi Gras season, well that is the same every year. It is always 12 days after Christmas, which is January 6. This day is celebrated in Christian religions as the Epiphany, and also known as King’s Day. This day has also been referred to as Twelfth Night. In New Orleans we also know it as the day that the King Cakes come out. What’s a King Cake? Check this out to learn more about it.
Here are some other interesting things about Mardi Gras that you may not know:
The Colors of Mardi Gras are purple, green and gold. They represent justice, faith, and power, respectively.
Mardi Gras Day is the only day it is legal to walk the streets of New Orleans with a mask on. But you have to remove it at 6PM.
The French Quarter, and particularly Bourbon Street, is known for its partying atmosphere that extends well into the wee hours of the morning. However, the one time of the year that revelry comes to an end early is when the clock strikes Midnight on Fat Tuesday night, thus marking the end of Mardi Gras and the beginning of Lent. The NOPD will clear Bourbon Street on this day with the assistance of their Mounted Division.
The first Mardi Gras Celebration was held in 1699 about 60 miles south of present-day New Orleans on the opposite side of the Mississippi River at a point named by explorer Iberville as Point du Mardi Gras.
Although the first celebration dates back to 1699, the first Mardi Gras Parade in New Orleans was in 1837.
Now, as far as the first Mardi Gras Parade celebration in the US, well it is believed that it was held in Mobile, AL in 1703…when Mobile was the capital of LOUISIANA. What? After doing a little research on that, I did find evidence to support that…Hmmm??
No matter where the first Mardi Gras parade was celebrated, who celebrates it today or how it is celebrated around the world, the ONE PLACE that puts on Mardi Gras with the passion, revelry, parades, and festivities like no other place in the world is… NEW ORLEANS BABY!!
Check out more here from Arthur Hardy, THE Mardi Gras Historian.
In closing here is one more fun fact about our culture:
New Orleans is eccentric if nothing else. The first Carnival Krewe was Comus in 1857. The second Krewe didn’t come along until 1870, but today there are more than 50. Don’t worry if your Cajun French is rusty: “laissez les bon temps rouler” is a phrase that you will hear much during Mardi Gras, and many others for that matter. Pronounced “Lay-say le bon tom roll-lay”, it means “let the good times roll.”
I hope to see everyone in February – “Laissez les bons temps rouler!”
HAPPY MARDI GRAS!