One of the signature events in the 2013 St. Louis Mardi Gras season is almost upon us. The River City Casino Grand Parade happens this Saturday through the streets of Soulard.
The parade will start at 11am at Busch Stadium and head South to end at the Anheuser-Busch Brewery complex. This event is one of the largest attended single events in St. Louis each year, attended by an estimated 200,000 people each year. The parade, in its 34th installment this year, will feature 125+ floats, walking brigades and bands.
After the parade, revelers converge on the historic neighborhood of Soulard to mix, mingle and celebrate life.
The floats built by the various krewes are some of the most impressive you will see in a St. Louis parade. The Mystic Knights of the Purple Haze have placed high with the judges in recent years and The Krewe of Calypseaux was impressive last year in only their third parade.
This year’s parade theme is Carnivale Comics and will feature Mike Peters as the Grand Marshal. Peters is a Pulitzer-Prize winning local product who is also the creator of the Mother Goose and Grimm strip.
The Soulard neighborhood plays host to a variety of events after the parade. There will be stages with live music spread throughout the neighborhood and plenty of booths selling food, drink and merchandise. You can expect to pay around $7 for a beer or “Hurricane” at any of the booths. Make sure to bring plenty of cash.
Another popular way that people celebrate the day is by buying tickets to one of the various “party tents”. Veteran party-goers will usually partake in one of these. Most include drinks, food and access to private temporary restrooms. R&R Sanitation already has portable commodes set up on virtually every corner in Soulard in preparation for the big day. The official party tent is the Bud Light Party Tent. Online ticket sales for that end today, but tickets can be purchased at any Dirt Cheap Chicken location in the area while supplies last. Tickets purchased there will come with a free $10 gift card.
Metro Transit is offering a shuttle between Soulard and the Civic Center MetroLink Station. The shuttle will cost $5 for a roundtrip ticket.
The will also be a shuttle going from the corner of 13th and Washington to Soulard and back. That shuttle will cost $2 per person each way.
The 2013 St. Louis Mardi Gras season will conclude with the Lumiere Place ‘Light Up The Night’ Fat Tuesday Parade through the streets of downtown St. Louis. Look for a post in the coming days on this blog. Businesses in the Mercantile Exchange district will be featuring various specials starting at 4pm on Tuesday in preparation for the 7pm parade start. The parade will step off at the corner of Washington and Broadway and go through the heart of the MX district as it moves West towards an end at 14th and Washington. Check out The Laurel Apartments’ blog for more information on specials in the MX.
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