While I experienced many adventures during my New Orleans Hotel Collection trip, I think our time at Mardi Gras World was the most interesting. Mardi Gras is known worldwide as a time when tourists and locals alike are encouraged to take part in costume fun, beg for beads and look in awe at every float that comes down Bourbon Street. But, did you know that Mardi Gras is actually the last day of a two week celebration? This, amongst many other key parts of Mardi Gras history, showed me how this yearly celebration means way more than what we see on the surface.
Mardi Gras World Warehouse
Blaine Kern studios is responsible for all of the wonderful floats that are viewed during Mardi Gras celebrations, and they work right out of the warehouse in Mardi Gras World, no matter how hot or muggy it may be. I was amazed by the giant fans on the ceilings that kept the whole warehouse cool. With over 100,000 sq. ft, this awesomely historic and huge warehouse is also used for Mardi Gras parties and events. It’s biggest event space is about 89,000 sq. ft. so you can just imagine the beautiful balls that take place there.
After a presentation of the history of Mardi Gras, we were able to see, firsthand, how a float is created. Artists were on site sculpting foam and turning it into amazing masterpieces.
As you would think, the creation of these floats takes lots of time, effort and planning. All float plans are started the day after Mardi Gras every year, as the artists and Super Krewes need all 11 and a half months to get ready for the next festivities.
Secrets of a Mardi Gras Float
Did you know that most floats have bathrooms right on board? There are even a select few that have bathrooms on the second floor as well. Krewes (the groups who plan and operate the floats) pick out the idea of their float as soon as the theme is announced and work on their costumes and gifts, so they will coincide with the re-occuring theme of all floats. These krewes also throw elaborate balls during Mardi Gras season and pay dues in order to be a part of the parade.
There’s so much to learn at Mardi Gras World and so much fun to be had during the tour. This would be a great family outing or even a fun day attraction for a girls trip to New Orleans. Mardi Gras World also offers a shuttle to it’s establishment; all you have to do is call them and they’ll pick you up at select hotels on Canal St. I hope you enjoy the tour and don’t forget to taste a piece of king cake at the end of the tour!
Disclaimer: I was offered a free VIP ticket to Mardi Gras World during my press trip to New Orleans. All opinions are my own.