Shreveport-Bossier is home to some of Louisiana’s largest parading Mardi Gras organizations, known locally as “krewes”. These krewes produce a busy calendar of parties, parades and other events each Carnival season. The 2019 Carnival will officially begin on the holiday known as Twelfth Night, or Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019, and end on Fat Tuesday, March 5, 2019.
The major parade weekends in Shreveport-Bossier begin on Friday, February 22, with the Krewe of Centaur Float-Loading Party. The float-loading party, an all-ages event where the public can get an up-close look at huge, colorful floats, mingle with krewe royalty and collect exclusive beads and throws, typically begins at 6 p.m. at the Krewe of Centaur Den located at 351 Aero Drive in Shreveport. Admission is free. On Saturday, Feb. 23, the fun continues with the Krewe of Centaur Parade. The parade begins, rain or shine, at 4:30 p.m. on Clyde Fant Parkway in downtown Shreveport. The massive parade proceeds along Shreveport’s parade route, which follows Clyde Fant Parkway south from downtown Shreveport, turns right onto Shreveport-Barksdale Highway and ends in the Broadmoor neighborhood at East Kings Highway Park. On Sunday, Feb. 24, the Krewe of Barkus and Meoux Pet Parade, a huge parade of costumed pets that has drawn crowds of more than 10,000 spectators, will be held at 2000 Reeves Marine Drive in Bossier City.
During the Krewe of Centaur Parade, the Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau produces a huge tent party for visiting groups of 10 or more who are seeking a fun, easy parade day experience. The 13th annual Red River Mardi Gras Bash will feature an afternoon-long parade viewing party with live music, great Cajun and Creole cuisine, behind-the-scenes tours of the parade route and reserved, front-row seating when the parade begins. Tickets are $40 per person and may be purchased by contacting Erica Telsee, tourism sales manager, at 800-551-8682 ext. 104.
The Krewe of Gemini will host the Krewe of Gemini Float-Loading Party at the Mardi Gras Museum located at 2101 East Texas Street in Bossier City beginning at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, March 1. The massive Krewe of Gemini Parade will follow the same route as the Krewe of Centaur Parade and will begin at 4 p.m. on Saturday, March 2. The second major parade weekend in Shreveport-Bossier concludes on Sunday, March 3, with the Krewe of Highland Parade, a funky and unpredictable neighborhood parade that winds its way through the Highland neighborhood of Shreveport. The parade begins at 2 p.m. at the intersection of Gregg Avenue and Gilbert Drive in Shreveport.
The Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau also produces a free, annual printed guide to local Carnival festivities, the 2019 Gris Gris Guide to Mardi Gras in Shreveport-Bossier, which can be requested by calling 800-551-8682. You can also view the 2019 Gris Gris Guide in digital format or download the parade routes.