Celebrate Mardi Gras This Year
If you’re looking for another holiday to celebrate this winter, there’s a good one coming up – Mardi Gras! This year, Mardi Gras will be celebrated on Tuesday, February 25th – and it’s a holiday steeped in traditions.
There are lots of ways you can go about celebrating the holiday without planning a trip to New Orleans. Here are a few ideas to get you started!
- Study the History and Traditions Behind Mardi Gras: Mardi Gras is French for Fat Tuesday and is also known as Shrove Tuesday. Shrove Tuesday is the final day before Lent begins, a time when people often give up something in preparation for Easter.
- It’s celebrated around the world with floats and parades and parties, and this is evident if you take a trip to New Orleans. Want to learn more? You can read about the history of this celebration here.
- Invite Your Friends Over for a Party: If you want to celebrate the holiday properly, you probably need to have a party. You can decorate your home with the traditional colors of Mardi Gras – green, gold, and purple – and serve some great foods from New Orleans.
- Make Sure You Have a King Cake: This is a long-standing Mardi Gras tradition brought to the United States from France. The King Cake is a cross between a coffee cake and pastry, and inside, you will find a tiny plastic baby. The baby is placed there as a symbol of Epiphany, which is the end of the Christmas season and the beginning of Carnival, or Mardi Gras season.
- If you want to make your own King Cake, here’s a delicious recipe: Mardi Gras King Cake. And, you can usually find the tiny plastic baby on Amazon or at your local party store.
- But, if you don’t want to be bothered making a King Cake, several places will ship one to you:
- Prepare Some Food for the Celebration: If you’re having a Mardi Gras party, you’ll definitely need some food! Cajun food is perfect for the occasion. Here are some dishes that your guests will love:
- Get Some Decorations: No party is complete without some decorations. And the decorations for Mardi Gras are certainly festive. Green, gold, and purple are everywhere! Lots of beads and masks! Check places like Oriental Trading, Amazon, and Party City to find some cute decorations!
- Find a Local Celebration: If you don’t want to have a party at home, you can always head out. You might be surprised to find that there are some local festivities!
- Embrace Global Traditions: Mardi Gras or Shrove Tuesday is a global holiday. In Brazil, they eat street food such as espetinhos, or little bits of barbecued meat on a stick, pao queijo, a Brazilian cheese bread, and cassava chips. In Quebec, they drink Caribou, a mixture of red wine, hard liquor, and maple syrup. There’s also cheese fondue and a special pastry called BeaverTails. If you do some research, you may find some additional treats that you’d like to add to your menu.
Let this year be the year you celebrate Mardi Gras! Throw a party, find a celebration to attend, or just make some delicious Cajun food before Lent begins. Laissez les bons temps rouler!