Saturday, February 6, 2010

Laissez les bon temps rouler - Mobile Style - and a new GIVEAWAY!!!

Happy Saturday, my fellow Fashionistas! Hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend! If you're one of my pals "snowed in" up North, I'm hoping your heat is working and you have plenty of things to keep you entertained! Wine, online shopping, etc! :-)

Did you know it's Mardi Gras season all over the Gulf coast? "Let The Good Times Roll" is the English translation of today's blog post title. Parades, balls and other celebrations from New Orleans, LA to Panama City, FL are in FULL swing! Next Sunday, DH and I will ride in our parade in downtown Mobile. This will be my 18th year to do so! I can't even believe it's been that long. Whoa how time flies when you are having FUN! 

Most people do not realize that Mardi Gras in the US originated in Mobile. Everyone presumes it began in New Orleans, because the city is larger and so are the parades. So I thought I'd give you a little background (from our friends at Wikipedia) about the origin of the celebrations in Mobile....

 Mardi Gras in Mobile, Alabama is the oldest annual Carnival celebration in the United States, having begun in 1703,[1][2][3] 15 years before New Orleans was founded in 1718.[3] The festival was a French Catholic tradition, reflecting the French colonial status of the first capital of La Louisiane. Settlers celebrated until midnight on Mardi Gras (French for "Fat Tuesday"), before the start of Lent on Ash Wednesday. Carnival and Mardi Gras in Mobile have evolved into a citywide multi-week celebration across the spectrum of cultures. The city has declared official school holidays[4] for the final Monday and Tuesday (some include Wednesday),[5] regardless of religious affiliation.

Although Mobile has traditions of secret mystic societies, who hold formal masked balls and create elegant costumes, the celebration has evolved over the past three centuries to showcase public parades where members of societies, often masked, go through the streets on floats or horseback. [6] [7] They toss gifts, called "throws", to the general public. The masked balls or dances, where men wear white tie and tails (full dress or costume de rigueur) and the women wear full-length evening gowns, are oriented to adults. Men who belong to the society wear masks. Some mystic societies treat the balls as an extension of the debutante season of their exclusive social circles. Various nightclubs and local bars offer their own particular events.

Beyond the public parades, Mardi Gras in Mobile involves many various mystic societies, some surviving since the 19th century, while new societies continue to be formed. Some mystic societies are not parading societies, but rather hold invitation-only events for their secret members, with private balls beginning in November.

Now, for some Mardi Gras FUN! To honor my hometown history, as well as my personal tradition of riding in Mardi Gras, I'm hosting another giveaway!!! This giveaway includes ALL the Mardi Gras BEADS and treats (maybe a few Moon Pies and cups!) I can shove into a Priority Mail flat rate box! What a great way to celebrate Mardi Gras at your house - no matter where you live! :-)

Here is how to win the giveaway (this is significantly different than my other giveaways, so please read!):

1 - Comment on this post telling me about your favorite local tradition in your hometown for ONE entry.

2 - Sign up to follow me on Twitter for ONE entry. You can find me @shopaholicinal

3 - Recommend your friends as "followers" to my blog. Be sure to comment with how many new followers you've recommended, so I can give you the proper amount of entries! You can earn ONE entry per new follower recommended.

4 - Share this giveaway on Twitter or Facebook using the "share" button on the right side of my page for ONE entry.

The giveaway will end on Monday, February 15 at midnight central time. After the drawing, the winner will be announced on Tuesday, February 16, 2010 - MARDI GRAS DAY!


  1. hmm, my favorite local tradition for mardi gras? they close down the streets of san diego for a big fat tuesday celebration! you pay a certian price to get into teh area, beer is cheap and everyone's dressed up! very fun!

  2. My favorite local tradition is "In the Streets" This is a street festival in the downtown area and is so much fun during one of the best fall weekends when the weather is still warm.

    You know I follow you on twitter and am off to tweet this giveaway on twitter.

  3. I LOVE this giveaway!!!

    Our town doesn't do anything, but my kids' preschool throws a parade for the 4 year olds and the younger ones get to watch. Very cute!! If I can find the pix from last year, I'll send them your way!! I already follow you on twitter and will be posting your link on both FB and Twitter.

  4. Two of my favorite traditions in my town are the St.Patrick's Day parade and the Memorial Day parade. Both are Norman Rockwell type parades and have been going on for generations.
    I already follow you on twitter!! What a fun giveaway. I never knew Mardis Gras started in Al.

  5. My favorite tradition in my hometown is called "Festival in the Park" and it's a really fun festival every May with lots of food and cute stuff for sale! I follow you on twitter :)

  6. I don't know anything about this but I love the mask! Post this on the PM fan page on FB. xoxo


  7. One of my favorite traditions in my hometown (Boston) are the various Saint's Day parades in the North End (Boston's version of Little Italy). I'm not Italian, but I sure do loooove their food and some restaurants offer samples/specials. There's a parade of people through the narrow historic streets. It's the perfect thing to do on a summer night!

  8. So glad I just found your blog!! I wish I lived in Alabama for big time Mardi Gras' celebrations. One of the biggest thing my hometown has is a marathon that has grown to a huge size, bands at different corners to cheer the runners - big party.

  9. Our town hosts Millstone Day - one of the local day camps opens up and everyone in town can use the facility - Plus, all the local organizations have a booth or table so you can learn all about them. It's like the first week of college when all the clubs have a table on the Quad. Fun!

  10. My favorite tradition is scarecrows month. Our small town gives out "scarecrow" kits to every one who wants to participate during the first weeks of Fall. It's up to you to design your scarecrow! The scarecrows are then tied to the street signs and light poles down main street and left up until the day after our Fall Heritage Days Parade. They depict everything from "Mother Goose" for the local mom's club to soldiers for those who have a family member in the military... It's fun to spend a Fall afternoon hiking through the town, laughing at all the great scare crows! Your Mardi Gras celebration looks like a blast! Thanks for sharing!

  11. What a fun giveaway! My hometown in the midwest has a Western themed celebration week and they re-enact a gunfight. It's so fun to watch with everyone on horses and all of the women in nineteenth century-style dresses! :)


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