MARDI GRAS: Parade, gumbo cook-off and masked ball planned locally
It’s that time of year to start gathering up the beads and doubloons.
Mardi Gras is just around the corner and Vicksburg will offer several events to celebrate the season including a parade, a gumbo cook-off and a masked ball.
The 18th annual Mardi Gras Parade will roll down Washington Street beginning at 4 p.m. Saturday, March 2, and the Vicksburg Main Street program, which sponsors the parade, is now taking applications for those interested in participating.
“All area clubs, churches, organizations, schools, dance/drill teams, and businesses are invited to take part in this community parade,” Vicksburg Main Street executive director Kim Hopkins said.
The cost to participate is $25 for all non-profit groups and $50 for businesses with fees increasing to $50 for non-profits and $100 for businesses after the Feb. 15 deadline, Hopkins said.
Serving as the grand marshall for the parade this year will be Marcus Furniture, Hopkins said.
“They are celebrating 120 years in Downtown Vicksburg and we are hoping everyone will come out to help them celebrate during the parade,” she said.
For more information on the Mardi Gras parade, contact the Vicksburg Main Street Program at 601-634-4527, email Kim at email@example.com, or visit www.downtownvicksburg.org.
The 8th Annual Carnaval de Mardi Gras Gumbo Cook-Off will be held following the parade from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Southern Cultural Heritage Center.
The event is presented by the Vicksburg Foundation for Historic Preservation and will include seafood and non-seafood categories.
For those interested in competing, Nancy Bell, who is executive director of the Vicksburg Foundation for Historic Preservation, said entry fees are $50 before Feb. 23 and $75 after.
Set up times the day of the gumbo cook-off, Bell said, will begin at 8 a.m. and judging will follow at 3:45 p.m.
Public tasting begins at 5 p.m. and awards will be handed out at 7:30.
A first, second and third place award will be given out in each category as well as a best decorated site and a people’s choice award, Bell said, with first place winners in each category taking home a trophy and $200.
For more information and rules, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.facebook.com/vicksburg.mardi.gras.
On Feb. 16, Fit Chef Catering, The Lofts and The Vicksburg will host the Vicksburg Mardi Gras Masked Ball.
For the past couple of years, The Vicksburg Main Street program has hosted a Mardi Gras Ball, but since the group decided to opt out this year, community relations and marketing director at The Lofts Kimberly Smith said there were some who had had a really good time, so they decided to “put together a party.”
“We just decided there should be a fun ball,” Smith said.
The inaugural event will be held from 7 to 11 p.m. at The Vicksburg Hotel Tea Room, 801 Clay St. and attendees are encouraged to dress in formal or cocktail attire.
However, because it is a ball, attendees are also welcome to wear a gown or tuxedo, Smith said.
The cost to attend is $25 and includes heavy hors d’oeuvre, a cash bar and entertainment by DJ Shaggy. Tickets are available at Fit Chef Catering or online at eventbrite.com. Space is limited, Smith said. For more information, visit eventbrite.com/e/vicksburg-mardi-gras-masked-ball-tickets-55316309571.