LAFAYETTE, LA (WAFB) - Lafayette is dubbed the second largest Mardi Gras in the State of Louisiana. Revelers typically toast a culture best known for boudin and BBQ.
It was a day locals have been waiting for. There was food, floats, throws, and some sunshine. The Krewe of Gabriel had the power of some famous super heroes on its side this year. Even for those revelers like D'Angelo Green, who typically enjoys riding in the parade, the party did not disappoint.
"It's very, very different, but I love it because everyone's in a great mood and in a great spirit," Green said.
The weather was certainly fit for a king, but being crowned Lafayette royalty takes a little work. The pages unpack and sort all the beads, but the King of Gabriel has got to focus on looking good. Gabriel LXXIX, Dr. Michael Judice, has worn a Carnival crown before, but this one, by tradition, required him to grow a beard.
"It's a tremendous honor to represent the City of Lafayette and the Greater Southwest Louisiana Mardi Gras Association and all of Acadiana. Lafayette Mardi Gras is the best. It's fun-filled and there's something for everybody," Judice said.
Between parades, locals d rop their tailgates and fire up the grill for a taste of Cajun culture. Everything from gumbo and tasso to BBQ and boudin are fair game.
Greater Southwest Louisiana Mardi Gras Association President Gene Lognion says the Cajun cuisine makes Lafayette Mardi Gras hot. "We consider from Lafayette around Alexandria north, that's the boudin curtain, and they don't have boudin up there. But if you're around here, from boudin land, you're in great shape," Lognion said.
If you happened to be just visiting, you were in luck. Sharing is a big part of the Cajun culture, and on Mardi Gras Day, there is always plenty of lagniappe.
Two parades followed the Krewe of Gabriel. The celebration continues through the night with a carnival at Cajun Field.