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We all know Mardi Gras is a day to let loose, but what makes it such a great holiday? This March 4th celebrate Fat Tuesday with a new appreciation after learning some fun facts about Mardi Gras!
Fat Tuesday is a Designated Day to PartyThis was originally a day for Catholics to go all out for one last hoorah before Lent started on Ash Wednesday. This is a chance for people to take the "fat" part of Fat Tuesday quite literally, and go all out. Everything is elaborate -- the parade, the costumes, the decorations, the food, the music... Everything is pushed to the limits.
The Mardi Gras Colors are Purple (for Justice), Green (for Faith), and Gold (for Power)These colors and their meanings were chosen by Rex, the King of Carnival in 1892. It's not often that a king mixing up a concoction of justice, faith, and power is a good thing. These colors have been a lasting reminder of the history of Mardi Gras, giving it a unique theme with the color combination, that makes you instantly think of the festivities.
At Mardi Gras, Anonymity is EncouragedMasks are worn to allow Carnival goers to be free to be whomever they want to be allowing people to mingle with among classes when it was not socially acceptable to do so. Float riders are even required by law to wear a mask. People go all out with their masks, too.
Free Stuff is Thrown from FloatsYou won't be coming home with just beads after attending the parade. People on floats have "throws" which is just like it sounds. A variety of things out are thrown out to the crowds. Along with beads, cups, doubloons, stuffed animals, and other goodies are commonly seen flying through the air.
King Cake with Little Plastic Babies InsideWho doesn't love cake? And this cake is special. Before the cake is baked a small plastic baby or other trinket is put in the mix and the person who gets the piece with it inside gets certain privileges and duties. As custom has it, they become the "king for a day", but also have to buy the next cake, or throw the next party.
Major Boost for New Orleans EconomicallyEven though the event has free admission, the amount of money that people spend otherwise and the amount of money that goes into people's floats has an enormous economic impact. Although the number has been difficult to gauge, it's been very profitable.
Mardi Gras Has Only Been Canceled 13 Times Since 1857The holiday can withstand the effects of a hurricane. After Hurricane Katrina hit in August Mardi Gras still went on! However, the Civil War, World War I, World War II, and Yellow Fever kept it from happening.
So there you have it -- now you're ready to celebrate the day as the Mardi Gras expert!
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