NEW ROADS, La. (WAFB) - Thousands of revelers gathered on the streets of New Roads on Feb. 25 for the second oldest Mardi Gras Day celebration outside of New Orleans.
“We do this every year. We try to get the same area every year and we get up very early to get out here,” said one parade-goer, Shannon Earley, who will tell you it’s all worth it.
The Mardi Gras Day celebration in New Roads is focused on family and friends instead of large floats and crowds. Families all along the route boiled, grilled, or barbecued delicious food before the parade.
The parades started rolling just after lunchtime. The Community Center Carnival Parade rolled first, followed by the Lions Parade.
The New Roads Mardi Gras celebration is the second oldest in Louisiana behind New Orleans. According to historian, Brian Costello, it’s even got its own nickname.
“The old folks used to call New Roads the Little Carnival Capital because of course, New Orleans is the Carnival city,” Costello said.
This year marks the 300th anniversary of permanent settlement in Pointe Coupee Parish and many of the floats in the parades showed that in their decorations.