Feb 232019
 

People cheer for beads from the Krewe of Pontchartrain’s Captain Sam float in 2018. (Zach Brien, UptownMessenger.com)

Saturday’s parade were moved up, with their start times an hour earlier, because of a threat of storms today. On Friday, the National Weather Service was predicting a cloudy day with a 50 percent chance of rain, a high near 81 and potential wind gusts as high as 25 mph. The predicted rainfall amounts were reduced to less than a tenth of an inch, but could go higher if thunderstorms occur.

Pontchartrain

The Krewe of Pontchartrain dates back to 1975. It celebrates marine life in its name, for Lake Pontchartrain, and some of its floats, such as “Mr. Mudbug,” the world’s largest crawfish, and “The Super Grouper,” a giant fish. Past grand marshals have included Allen Toussaint, Red Buttons, Bart Simpson, Irma Thomas, Jim Henderson and Becky Allen.

START: Noon (originally scheduled for 1 p.m.) at Napoleon Avenue and Tchoupitoulas Street
It rolls up Napoleon to St. Charles, then all the way to Canal Street, where it turns right.
END: Tchoupitoulas and Poydras Street

Route for the the Pontchartrain, Choctaw and Freret parades (via ready.nola.gov)

Choctaw

Chief Choctaw rides in the 2016 parade. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Choctaw began parading 1939 when the West Bank krewe purchased 10 old U.S. mail wagons from a salvage company for $50 each. The old stripped-down wagons formed the chassis for the first Choctaw parade floats. Its parades today are far more elaborate. The theme this year is “A Celebration of Life.”

START: 1 p.m. (originally scheduled for 2 p.m.) at Napoleon Avenue and Tchoupitoulas Street
It rolls up Napoleon to St. Charles Avenue. At Canal Street, it turns right.
END: Tchoupitoulas and Poydras

Freret

The Freret parade includes a second-line. (Zach Brien, UptownMessenger.com)

Freret was formed in 2011 by seven Loyola University graduates who sought to create a parade favoring local vendors and craftspeople. It eschews imported beads and trinkets in favor of hand-crafted and locally made throws, including the signature hand-decorated mask. Also look for one of the year’s special throws: a yellow NFL penalty flag. The theme for 2019 is “The World Is Your Oyster.” Dancing Man 504 leads the parade every year.

START: 2 p.m. (originally scheduled for 3 p.m.) at Napoleon Avenue and Tchoupitoulas Street
It rolls up Napoleon to St. Charles, then all the way to Canal Street, where it turns right.
END: Tchoupitoulas and Poydras

 

 

The Knights of Sparta roll on Magazine Street. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Sparta

The Knights of Sparta originated as a bal masque organization in 1951, staging elaborate tableaus for many years at the Municipal Auditorium. In 1981, the Knights began parading. A mule-drawn king’s float, traditional flambeaux and mounted officers are just a few of the features of the Knights of Sparta street parade. Sparta’s theme for 2019 is “Beyond the Sea.” Watch for the krewe’s top-secret mystery throw.

START: 5:30 p.m. at Jefferson Avenue and Magazine Street
The parade takes a right on Magazine Street, then a left on Napoleon Avenue, before turning right on St. Charles Avenue.
END: Tchoupitoulas and Poydras

Route for Knights of Sparta, Krewe of Pygmalion (via ready.nola.gov)

Pygmalion

The Krewe of Pygmalion was founded in 1999 by a group of Carnival veterans who wanted to provide a high-quality parade during the first week of the Uptown parade season. The krewe’s 450 members include both men and women. This year’s parade celebrates “Louisiana’s Bounty.”

START: 6:15 p.m. at Jefferson Avenue and Magazine Street
The parade takes a right on Magazine Street, then a left on Napoleon Avenue, before turning right on St. Charles Avenue.
END: Tchoupitoulas and Poydras

The Krewe of Pygmalion rolls on Magazine Street on Saturday evening. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

For updates, see the city’s parade tracker. For need-to-know parade day information, see here.  For parking and transportation information, see here.

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