Minden Press-Herald

Oct 02nd

Mardi Gras is here!

Continuing a 15-year tradition with a decidedly-German twist, Mardi Gras will come to town Saturday disguised as Minden Fasching Karneval and Parade.

Pattie Odom, Downtown Development Director said the carnival and downtown entertainment begin at 10 a.m. with the parade kicking off at 2 p.m.

According to Odom, Elm Street, East & West, Main Street and Broadway will close about one hour before the parade.

"All side streets on Elm will also be closed, so folks will have to detour," she said. "Germantown Road to East Todd and Elm will close at noon for parade line up. People will have to detour on Kennon or loop around Country Club Circle."

Odom said the Mardi Gras celebration is earlier this year to avoid a conflict with the Minden St. Jude Auction and the Super Bowl, both of which take place February 5.

"Normally, we have the parade the same day as Springhill's Mardi Gras parade," Odom said. "Because of the auction, we moved the parade up a week early. Springhill will have theirs the next weekend."

Since weather seems to be less stable in January and night falls earlier, Odom said it was decided to move the parade starting time up.

"We're just experimenting," Odom said. "We'll see if people enjoy it more at an earlier time ... we want feedback on it."

As last year, it is an extended parade route that lines up on Germantown Road at Richardson Elementary School, proceeds down Elm Street, turns on East and West, McDonald, through downtown Minden and back up Elm Street to the school.

While the parade is in its 15th year, the German tradition of Mardi Gras is in its second.

"Minden Fasching Fifth Season Celebration officially began November 11 when Mayor Bill Robertson presented the keys to the city to the King and Queen, Dana and Hunt Powell, of the Krewe des Ambassadeurs," Odom said.

The King and Queen will reign over the "karneval festivities" which will end on Ash Wednesday.

The Fasching Karneval and Parade is being organized by volunteers from various organizations in the community, Minden Main Street, Minden-South Webster Chamber of Commerce, the Krewe des Ambassadeurs and Webster Parish Convention and Visitors Bureau.

"We will have a carnival again downtown," Odom said. "It was a good, clean-run carnival last year, so we know it will be again. We'll have entertainment starting at 10 a.m."

Odom said there will be clowns, face painting and special food booths.

"There will be entertainment that will go until the parade hits downtown," she said. "Then, it will start back up again."

For more information on the Minden Fasching Karneval and Parade, call Odom at 371-4258 or Kerry Easley at 377-1500.






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