Tuesday, January 29

Insider Tips to Riding in a Mardi Gras Parade

Ever wondered what was required to ride in a Mardi Gras parade?


Well ... here are a few tips of the trade I picked up from my fellow riders:
(This will be my first ride, I haven't ridden yet myself and cannot fully guarantee these tips until after next Wednesday)

  • Bring a plastic cup holder to secure by your float position. This way you can drink and still have a secure location for your liquids while keeping your hands free for throws. Sometimes you can even use beverage beads or covered cups with lanyards to hang around your neck.
  • Always keep a little flashlight handy. This way when you adventure off to use the float's port-a-let while rolling in a night parade, you are not going in the dark ... literally.
  • Have plenty of rubber bicycle hooks and plastic flower pots. This way you can properly organize your beads during the ride while keeping your smaller throws together and easy to grab.
  • Wear cheap gloves, preferably finger-less.  This way your hands won't get bruised, too dirty, or rubbed raw after hours of hurling beads and opening throw packages.
  • Dress comfortably. This way you are good to go for hours on end in your 2' x 2' float position dressed in yoga pants and comfy shoes since the general public will never see what is under your flashy costume. 
  • Plan what you are going to drink and eat.  This way you have your water, wine, soda, and/or mixed drinks ready and know if you need an ice refill? Also, what food are you going to eat and will it need to be delivered to your float while waiting to roll or brought in prior? Plan ahead!
  • Force yourself to stop and enjoy the moment! This way you can truly have fun and make lots of memories during the ride by fully basking in the Mardi Gras merriment with your fellow riders and, especially, the parade-goers.


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