Natchitoches will celebrate Mardi Gras with two parades

NATCHITOCHES—The City of Natchitoches will celebrate the Mardi Gras holiday with Mardi Gras Magic on Saturday, Feb. 18.

The celebration kicks off with the Krewe of Wag-uns Parade, featuring pets, children, costumed characters and other community entities, will take place at 1 p.m. Line up begins at 12:30 p.m. at the Bank of Montgomery, located at 814 Washington St. in the Natchitoches Historic District. Children may ride bicycles, scooters or wagons. Golf carts are permissible if driven by an adult.

The Krewe of Wag-uns Parade begins at the Bank of Montgomery and will travel down Front Street, to Touline Street where it will turn left and continue down the riverbank, ending at the riverbank stage. The parade is free for the public to view.

Live musical entertainment will be provided in front of Exchange Bank on Front Street from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. by the Luke Jazz Trio. Downtown businesses will be open for dining and shopping.

At 5:30 p.m., on Feb. 18, the Krewe of Dionysos Parade will roll through the streets of Natchitoches. The parade begins at the River South Commons Shopping Center on South Drive, travels north to Keyser Avenue and crosses the Keyser Avenue Bridge.

It then turns right and travels north on Jefferson Street to Front Street and turns left onto Texas Street. Next, it turns onto Second Street and ends at Church Street. The return route to the staging area will be crossing Church Street Bridge and turning onto Williams Avenue to Keyser and back to South Drive to the River South commons Shopping Center. Anyone interested in participating in the parade is asked to contact Rick Calvert, Parade Co-Captain, (318) 471-0923.

The grand marshal for the parade is former New Orleans Saints Quarterback Bobby Hebert. Floats will be throwing Mardi Gras beads and other trinkets to attendees.

Motorists should be aware of street closures throughout the day to accommodate both parades. Portions of Front Street, Church Street Bridge and the Keyser Avenue Bridge will close to traffic as both parades approach.

For more information about Mardi Gras Magic, please contact the Main Street Office at (318) 352-2746 or the Natchitoches Area Convention and Visitors Bureau at 1-800-259-1714 or visit www.natchitoches.net.