It’s almost unimaginable to think of Uptown New Orleans without Mardi Gras parades in February. But with parades canceled due to COVID, residents have imagined a new tradition – creating wild and whimsical Yardi Gras house floats all over their neighborhoods. Yardi Gras, organized by the Krewe of House Floats, is a safe alternative to Mardi Gras parades in the coronavirus era. Instead of congregating in large groups to watch floats go by, people have decorated their own houses and turned the streets of New Orleans into a giant, stationary parade.
In normal times, the residents of the Touro, Milan, Bouligny and Uptown areas enjoy their easy access to Carnival parades, as reflected in their subkrewe’s theme: “Celebrating Uptown Parades.” Notable house floats include a “catnival” filled with feline puns on the 2200 block of Marengo Street and “Chewy’s Guide to the COVID Galaxy” on the 4700 block of Camp Stre
et, where giant letters spell out the much-needed message “DON’T PANIC!”
Residents are also working to help their neighbors in need and support the artists and musicians who make Mardi Gras possible.