NEW ORLEANS, La. (WGNO) – We knew Mardi Gras 2021 wasn’t canceled but would be a bit different next year. However, many didn’t realize just how different the celebration would be until this morning.
“Well, we were shocked this morning it was not said that there would be no parades and so everyone assumed that we were just gonna have to find a way to be cooperative and find a new way to make it happen,” said President of Endymion, Dan Kelly.
But Kelly realized this wasn’t the case after the city‘s website announced parades of any kind will not be permitted for Mardi Gras 2021 for safety reasons. “You can’t have a gathering larger than 250 people,” explained Director of Communications, Beau Tidwell. “So your common sense would tell you that parades as we traditionally celebrated them here are not possible under the current guidelines.”
Multiple krewes say they understand the mayor’s decision. The Rex organization released a statement saying “We understand the seriousness of the pandemic and we fully support our city’s fight against COVID-19.“ They are also working to pitch alternative ideas to the mayor— something Cantrell urged all krewes to do. Endymion’s suggestion? Pushing Mardi Gras back to later next year.
“To gain some city revenue,” said Kelly. “We bring in over $20 million of revenue to the city and state each year in sales tax revenues. The hotels, the restaurants, bead businesses, costume makers, float builders.”
But as of now, the city isn’t interested in postponing the annual celebration. Kelly says, the only thing left to do is plan for the future. “We’ll still be able to put on our parades in 2022 if we can’t have 2021. But hopefully, the city and the city’s administration will consider allowing it,” said Kelly.