Mardi Gras celebrations return to St. Louis

Riley Mullgardt
Entertainment Editor

Public Domain Photo from Wikimedia  Commons

Beads, King Cake and feathers are all signs of the ever so popular holiday Mardi Gras. The St. Louis’ Mardi Gras parade is Saturday, Feb. 25, at 11 a.m. starting at Busch Stadium and ending at Anheuser-Busch Brewery.

Junior Sophie Crank said, “The dog parade is so fun because all the dogs are cute.”

According to the STL Mardi Gras website, there is entertainment like the “Bud Light Block Party, the High Heel Drag Race, live music and a giant post-parade street party and celebration held throughout Soulard.”

Freshman Ainsley McDermott said, “It was really festive, and I felt like I was in New Orleans.”

Mardi Gras is originally a Catholic holiday, which takes place the day before Ash Wednesday. It is a French term that means, “fat tuesday,” meaning people eat everything they want before Lent. (Lent starts the day after Mardi Gras, and it is when everyone gives up an object or food until Easter to symbolize the 40 days Jesus spent in the wilderness enduring the temptation of Satan).

According to the Washington Post, the top 15 things given up for Lent in 2016 were school, chocolate, twitter, swearing, alcohol, soda, social networking, sweets, fast food, homework, lent, junk food, meat, chips and coffee.

The first Mardi Gras celebration in America was held in Alabama in 1699, but nothing was officially organized like it is now. Basically, everyone could do whatever they wanted, anywhere they wanted.

In the 1800s things started to get extremely rowdy and violet. The holiday was almost banned by the U.S. government officials from continuing until a group of six people decided to make it more formal by starting a private club that would present a parade based off a theme.

By 1872 the club was succeeding and had set official colors of purple, green and gold.

Fast forward to the 20th century and the parades are still around with even more entertainment.

In Saint Louis there are parades, puppy parades, private balls, races and food competitions. The Missouri Lottery Run For Your Beads 5K was on Feb. 18, and the Beggin’ Pet Parade was on Feb. 19.

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