Mardi Gras Party Ideas

Laissez le bon temps rouler, y’all

Mardi Gras, Mardi Gras season, Fat Tuesday and Carnival season, are English terms refering to events of the Carnival celebrations, beginning on or after the Epiphany or Kings day and culminating on the day before Ash Wednesday. Mardi Gras is French for Fat Tuesday, referring to the practice of the last night of eating richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season, which begins on Ash Wednesday. The day is sometimes referred to as Shrove Tuesday, from the word shrive, meaning “confess.” – info from

Mardi Gras Party Ideas

Mardi Gras parties are some of the easiest parties to pull together and they can be family friendly or just for the adults. Below are some simple Mardi Gras party ideas that will help you plan a great event that is both fun and easy.

So as they say on the beach in North Padre Island, Texas “Laissez le bon temps rouler, y’all” or “Let the good times roll, y’all!”

A pancake race in Buckinghamshire Feb. 24, 2009. Photo by Lestalorm.

A pancake race in Buckinghamshire Feb. 24, 2009. Photo by Lestalorm. Let’s try this on the beach in flip flops for a Barefoot Mardi Gras event!

Pancake Party: Pancakes are associated with the day preceding Lent because they were a way to use up rich foods such as eggs, milk, and sugar, before the fasting season of the 40 days of Lent. The liturgical fasting emphasized eating plainer food and refraining from food that would give pleasure: In many cultures, this means no meat, dairy, or eggs. This Mardi Gras party theme is perfect for a fun get together with friends. Set up a “pancake bell” – just like the ones the churches use on Shrove Tuesday before you serve your guests pancakes. You could also set up a pancake race, similar to the ones in England. Have each participant carry a frying pan with a cooked pancake. While running through the course, they also must flip the pancake a number of times before reaching the finish line.

barefoot mardi gras 2014 padreisland78418

Bourbon Street Party: Can’t make it to New Orleans – decorate your house with lights, streamers, and balloons and throw some beads in your trees. Grab some costume items – mask, boas, silly hats and lots of beads and set up a photo booth for guests to pose and take pictures. Play Mardi Gras trivia, have a costume contest, and make a bead toss game with a stick and some beads. Have Third-Line Brass Band music or some jazz playing (here’s a site with some traditional music or check this site out) and serve some traditional Mardi Gras fare – check this site out for Mardi Gras recipes.

Masquerade Dinner Party: Very easy Mardi Gras party idea. Ask your guest to come wearing a mask or come completely disguised as someone of their choosing and have plenty of beads to place on your guest as they enter the party. We have friends that have an entire room dedicated to hats.  Throughout the party people go up stairs and change hats and costume attire accessories.  Really fun – just like Mardi Gras! Plan a dinner menu for a fancy sit down dinner or set up the dinner buffet style. Have Third-Line Brass Band music or some jazz playing (here’s a site with some traditional music or check this site out) and serve some traditional Mardi Gras fare – check this site out for Mardi Gras recipes.

Barefoot Mardi Gras float decorationsIsland Block Party: Invite friends, family, and neighbors together to celebrate Mardi Gras on the street! Progressive parties are fun or set up a potluck for everyone to bring different Mardi Gras food items like gumbo, King Cake, jambalaya, fritters, grits, oysters, and other Cajun or Creole dishes. Have activities for kids to play during the party – or maybe a station for mini float decorations. All you need are some shoe boxes, glue and Mardi Gras decorations from Hobby Lobby. Have masks for guests to select from on a community table or let them come dressed up with sporting their own Mardi Gras flare.  Some time during the night get a third line going down the street – it is easy to organize – just watch Treme reruns on HBO if you need some pointers!

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