Mardi gras is French for Fat Tuesday, referring to the practice of the last night of eating richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season
The origins of Mardi Gras can be traced to medieval Europe, passing through Rome and Venice. New Orleans was established in 1718 by Bienville. By the 1730s, Mardi Gras was celebrated openly in New Orleans, but not with the parades we know today. It took another 100 years (late 1830s) before New Orleans held street processions of maskers with carriages and horseback riders to celebrate Mardi Gras.
These photos were taken on a trip to New Orleans (February 7-13, 2013) and it's famous Mardi Gras.
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© Gene Knudsen Photography