Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

Midsummer Mardi Gras parade begins

Natalia Silva
Mid-summer Mardi Gras parade participants on Aug. 23, 2023. This is the Krewe of OAK’s 37th annual mid-August parade.

Editors note: This story has been updated to reflect krewe organization information.

The Krewe of OAK’s 37th annual Midsummer Mardi Gras began rolling on Aug. 23, starting on Oak St. with the theme “Blue Moon Rising.”

Members from other krewes, such as the Muff-a-Lottas and the Krewe of Chewbacchus were in attendance, as well.

Krewe of Chewbacchus is a science-fiction themed parade that features many groups like Star Wars freaks, Trekkies, Whovians, mega-geeks, gamers, cosplayers, circuit benders, cryptozoologists, UFO conspiracy theorists, mad scientists, and all super nerds.

The parade started at 6:30, where they toasted the king and queen. Quickly after, the parade began its festivities.

New Orleans locals Candice Henderson and Rob Henderson dressed up as characters from the movie “Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story.”

“The midsummer parades are a little less formal and people get to be creative with how they want to dress,” Candice Henderson said.

According to the Henderson’s, the midsummer parades bring out the best in New Orleans because, since it is so accessible to the community, everybody joins in this early celebration.

Any and all fandoms are welcome, and members can build almost any contraption to roll in the parade, as long as they can be pushed, pedaled, pulled, or electric-powered.

Amy Jernigan and her son are locals who have previously participated in the mid-August parade.

“When you are halfway to Mardi Gras, you start to miss it,” said Jernigan.

According to Jernigan, this is the best part of New Orleans. So, every chance she gets to participate in a parade, she takes.

Mardi Gras usually takes place during the month of February; however, midsummer Mardi Gras takes place late August and early September, which means the heat takes over.

“It’s hot, it’s always hot,” says Jernigan, “I’m glad that Oak St. has many restaurants, bars, and shops that we can go into to refresh ourselves.”

On the streets down the route, there’s food and drinks for sale allowing locals to sit back, relax, and enjoy the parade before all the tourists arrive for the big show in February.

“Don’t Panic. Just be awesome (and adaptable). The biggest difference about costuming for a party or a con and a parade is that you have to be able to walk in your costume! We’re a walking krewe,” said the Krewe of Chewbacchus.

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