I initially decided to join the Krewe of Cleopatra because one of my clients suggested that it would be a great way for me to network. This particular client owns a Mardi Gras supply store, so he should know a good time when he sees one. It sounded like fun, so I decided to give it a go. Five years later as a lieutenant, I’m already excited for next year. Here’s why you should jump on my
Meeting New People
I’ve met so many great women from all over, and everyone supports each other and lifts each other up. It’s like the sorority you didn’t join in college, except you are no longer living off ramen noodles. Regardless of whether you’re a stay at home mom, work from home mom or a work away from home mom – it can benefit you both personally and professionally. Plus, it’s just a great way to make new friends! Who needs an app to meet mom friends? Sisterhood for life.
Girls Just Wanna Have Fun
Almost all of my riders joined up with their mom/sister/best friend/cousin. It’s such a fun way to come together on parade day with all your girlfriends and cut loose. No boys allowed! I’ve been riding with my family and friends since I joined, and each year we add more connected groups of women. We have family float day, cup decorating parties, social events, hair/makeup bonding time, you name it.
It’s the most fun you’ll have all year
From wearing a fancy dress and dancing the night away to the finale of rolling down the Avenue, it’s so.much.fun! The first year I rode, in the middle of the parade I turned to my sister in law and yelled, “I’M HAVING SO MUCH FUN!” She replied, “OMG, IM HAVING SO MUCH FUN!” We were a tad bit excited. It’s such a rush when you start rolling, dancing to the music and seeing a sea of people scream and holler. We make a full day of the both the ball and the parade, partying together for a good 12 hours each. Yes it’s a lot. Yes, I’m tired every year. But I’ll do it all again in a heartbeat. It is hands down the most fun I have all year. Did I mention that it’s so much fun?!
You get to play dress up
We live in New Orleans, so it’s not like we need an excuse. But to get all dolled up, don a fun wig and witness a sea of women all dressed alike – it’s the coolest thing. My wig got a hair cut with my stylist, has a special stand in my closet and even has her own name (Kendra). We plan out everything, right down to which glitter eye liner we’ll wear. Until I joined a krewe, I hadn’t dressed up for Mardi Gras since I was a kid. You forget what a great time it is to really get into the spirit of the carnival season.
A New Orleanian’s Bucket list
If you only do one major thing in New Orleans, do this. I had no idea how much I was going to enjoy it, as many of my riders do. It’s such a privilege we have as New Orleanians … to party for weeks with booze, fried chicken and king cake. It also holds some of my fondest memories like sitting on my Paw’s shoulders as a kid, tossing coins at the Flambeauxs. Riding in a parade rekindled my love for Mardi Gras and what it means to miss New Orleans. Even my friends who moved away will come back for their annual ride.