From the bustling scenes of Charlotte and the Triangle, to the sleepy seaside town of Ocean Isle Beach, up to the serene mountainous setting of Asheville, and everywhere in between, North Carolinians will soon be letting the good times roll at events across the state in celebration of Mardi Gras.
French for “Fat Tuesday,” Mardi Gras officially occurs on March 5, but celebrations take place throughout the Tar Heel State in the weeks leading up to and after Fat Tuesday. We’ve compiled a few here that might be the perfect spot for you to get your N’awlins on.
Mardi Crawl 2019
Held on Saturday, March 9, Charlotte’s local Mardi Gras bar crawl takes place at six different spots perfect for reveling. Event organizers will supply beads and feathered masks at check-in for participants to wear as they walk from bar to bar throughout Charlotte’s fun Uptown district. As a bonus, each venue will provide cover and drink specials. While you must be at least 21-years-old to “crawl,” the alcohol is purely optional!
2019 Mardi Gras Ball
The Triangle’s premier Mardi Gras Ball will take place at the Raleigh Marriott Crabtree Valley on Friday, March 1, beginning at 7 p.m. There will be live music from The Embers, dancing, food, a silent and live auction, a Krewe Parade, and more! Tickets for a Krewe After Party are also available.
Wake Forest Mardi Gras
If you’re looking for something a little more family-friendly, swing by downtown Wake Forest for the Wake Forest Mardi Gras Street Festival on Saturday, March 2 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The free event will feature a walking parade, music, entertainment, face painting, children’s activities, assorted contests for guests of all ages, and special promotions and discounts from downtown merchants throughout the day.
Mardi Gras for Paws
What better way to laissez les bon temps rouler (that’s French for “let the good times roll”) than by celebrating Mardi Gras and helping to raise funds for unwanted animals? The Paws-Ability Team of Brunswick County will host their annual Mardi Gras for Paws charity event on March 5 at Jinks Creek Waterfront Grille in Ocean Isle Beach. Guests can enjoy live music by the Sea & Sand Band, Cajun appetizers and so much more. Though not required, event organizers encourage costumes as prizes will go to the best ones in attendance!
Asheville Mardi Gras Parade
The Asheville Mardi Gras Parade takes places on March 3—beginning at 3:05 p.m.—rain or shine! This year’s theme is “Wild Wild Asheville,” paying homage to both the area’s spectacular sights and the thriving arts and music scene. The parade will traverse through the South Slope brewery district on the edge of downtown, with plenty of room for spectators to watch along the parade’s half-mile route. This event has a strict no alcohol policy making the parade another NC family-favorite fit for kids of all ages. Don your masks, feathers and beads as Asheville becomes Cajun country for an afternoon.
Still not sure how you want to celebrate? You can’t go wrong with baked goods in the comforts of your own home. Use this recipe to whip up a delicious King Cake and recreate some of that fantastic flair found at Mardi Gras.
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