Mardi Gras season in New Orleans kicks off with cakes, street car rides
People in greater New Orleans braved the cold and rain Friday to mark the start of the Mardi Gras Season, standing in pre-dawn, windy lines to buy celebratory cakes and closing the evening on a rainy night with costumed street car rides. (Photo: AP)
The holiday season begins on Epiphany, commemorating the day the Bible says the three wise men reached the baby Jesus. Fat Tuesday, which marks the culmination of Mardi Gras season, falls on Feb. 28.
Mia Weakley, 11, sits on the lap of her godfather, Chuck Rogers, inaugural King "Societe des Champs Elysee," as they ride the Rampart-St. Claude street car line.
Wearing masks and festive costumes, they honored their king and queen at a neighborhood bar and danced as a brass band played "Carnival Time," before boarding their red street car.
Members of the "Societe des Champs Elysee" light fireworks on their way to a bar.
Big Chief Kevin Goodwin, right, of the Mardi Gras Indian tribe "Flaming Arrows," talks to a member of the Elysian Brass Band, outside Buffa's Lounge.
Members of the "Societe des Champs Elysee" pass out king cake as they ride the Rampart-St. Claude street car line.
Cheryl Gerber, a member of the "Societe des Champs Elysee" poses for the camera while riding the Rampart-St. Claude street car line.