Gras is Tuesday, March 4, but those native Louisianans know that this holiday
is not a one day affair. In fact, it can last months for some regions of the
state! We have been here in Louisiana this weekend getting just a taste of what Mardi Gras is like. If you can’t make it out to the home of Mardi Gras though, and want to learn more about the holiday or just get in on the fun too, you still have time. Here are a few kid-friendly ideas to incorporate Mardi Gras no
matter where you are.
Hold a Parade
One of the most iconic parts of Mardi Gras are the parades. If you have ever
wanted to attend a Mardi Gras parade but never had a chance, organize one in
your neighborhood or even in your home. Get dressed up in the green, purple,
and gold colors of the holiday, paint your faces, and make floats out of your
vehicles, bicycles, and even wagons. If you are at home, have kids make a
shoe box float and place their favorite teddy bear in it and parade up and down
Make Cajun Food
Look up recipes of popular Cajun classics and get the whole family involved in
cooking them. Make it a gumbo cook-off challenge with your neighbors and
friends and charge an entry fee to the cook-off. Give half the proceeds to the
winner and donate the other half to a charity. To get you started, here is a great recipe for New Orleans Style Shrimp and Grits.
Listen to Zydeco
No matter what you choose to do, give yourself some background music and set
the mood. Zydeco is a popular Cajun music that is played at almost every
get-together in Louisiana. You can find the music online and even download some
for a rainy day as a great pick-me-up.
Decorate Your Home
If you haven’t put it up yet, decorate your Christmas tree as a Mardi Gras
tree- a popular custom among Louisiana natives. Set your tables in purple,
gold, and green and hang Mardi Gras masks around your home. Get in the spirit
of Mardi Gras by living with the décor.
Teach Your Kids About It
Teach your children about Mardi Gras and the true meaning of the holiday by
reading them stories and telling them the history of it. Then, teach them how
the holiday celebrations have evolved over the years and discuss ways you can
celebrate it together. We’ve loved learning more about how the Mardi Gras parades came about and the traditions behind them while here.
While New Orleans is definitely the best place to celebrate Mardi Gras, it is possible to enjoy this festive holiday no matter where you are. How will you celebrate Mardi Gras this year?