The New Orleans Saints are hosting their annual Mardi, the parade of floats and floats of colors that has become synonymous with the city’s holiday traditions.
The parade has become such a fixture in the city, many residents wear masks during the festivities, and even New Orleans has its own Mardi costume parade.
But now, a new generation of Mardi fans are taking to the streets, bringing their own traditions to the Mardi stage.
While the parade is still an annual tradition, a recent survey by New Orleans-based marketing firm Marketo found that more than 70 percent of visitors said they’d like to attend a Mardi event without masks.
And while it may seem like an odd idea to get in the spirit of Mardis, a couple of Milt Mardi enthusiasts say it’s a no-brainer.
“The whole concept is that we want to be a party,” said Marcella Tafoya, who is from New Orleans and has spent the past two years living in New York.
“We’re not looking for an evening out, we’re not interested in having a party, we want a fun time.”
The Mardi party spirit is a big part of the reason why Marcellas son, Austin, who grew up in the Big Easy, decided to come to New Orleans to celebrate the parade with friends and family.
The day before, Austin had planned to attend the parade in his hometown of Cleveland, Ohio.
But when he arrived at the New Orleans Convention Center, Austin’s friends and relatives informed him that there would be a line out the door, so he and his girlfriend headed straight to the parade.
“I got my ticket, and I walked out there,” Austin said.
“My friends were like, ‘Why are you leaving?
Are you crazy?'”
When Austin arrived at Mardi Square, he found that there was an incredible line.
He and his friends got their tickets, and they headed straight for the parade, which is located on the main street.
“We had to wait for about a half-hour to get through,” he said.
“It was pretty awesome.”
For Austin, it was one of the most memorable days of his life.
“It was amazing to see the whole Mardi crowd and how excited they were for this parade, to be honest,” Austin added.
“People were coming out of nowhere.
I was just blown away by the sheer numbers.
It was incredible.”
As Austin’s father, Eric, said, “You get to the end, and then it’s just you and your friends in the crowd.”