NEW ORLEANS – Though the Mardi Gras parades are cancelled for 2021, the spirit is still alive in the Big Easy! The Krewe of Red Beans is taking the New Orleans spirit that makes carnival floats and is bringing it to homes around the city through the “Hire a Mardi Gras Artist” initiative, allowing Mardi Gras float artists to continue working during this difficult time while bringing some joy and magic to New Orleanians. Commander’s Palace is thrilled to support The Krewe of Red Beans once again in their continued efforts to assist and give back to those most impacted by the pandemic in a truly New Orleans way. The Commander’s team is supporting the “Hire a Mardi Gras Artist” initiative to transform Le Petit Bleu, our next door to-go spot, and the front of Commander’s Palace into a decked-out house float.
Sticking to tradition, Commander’s Palace is working with Pete Fountain’s Half-Fast Walking Club to design the house float. Pete Fountain’s Half-Fast Walking Club has started their parade at the restaurant for as long as we can remember. The restaurant is only closed two days of the year, Mardi Gras being one of them, but we open just for this crazy krewe (beloved for their costumes, joie de vivre, silliness, and amazing music) to have drinks at the bar and take sandwiches to enjoy on the parade. Le Petit Bleu’s house float will be a tribute to our long association with the Half-Fast Walking Club – with a Half-Fast celebration of Mardi Gras in the Year That Mardi Gras Wasn’t.
“The sight of Pete Fountain, Benny Harrell, and the future crazy Half-Fast Krewe leaving every Mardi Gras morning at the bar and in the courtyard of Commander’s Palace is hysterical,” shares Ti Martin and Lally Brennan, co-proprietors of Commander’s Palace. “They are the jolliest, silliest group with nothing but merry making and Hijinx up their sleeve. They are the Mardi Gras spirit. And that is a spirit that not even the ‘Mardi Gras that Wasn’t’ can kill. God Love ’em. We know we do!”
“Most years, the Mardi Gras artisans work behind the scenes to create the beautiful floats that roll down our streets. With parades cancelled, this year they have lost their jobs. This year they need our help! We are excited to put them back to work – thanks to Commander’s Palace and others,” shares Krewe of Red Beans founder Devin De Wulf.
The float’s debut date will be announced soon.