It's Always Carnival Time Somewhere

May 3 2017

It’s Always Carnival Time Somewhere.
On May 13, That Somewhere Is Peoria, Illinois.

While it’s 286 days before the next Fat Tuesday in New Orleans, the people of Peoria, Illinois, only have to wait 11 more days. On May 13th, from 3 to 10 p.m., Water Street in downtown Peoria will be magically transformed into the New Orleans French Quarter for the 2nd Annual Mardi Gras in May Street Party. 

On Peoria’s Fat Tuesday, well, Fat Saturday, there will be street performers, Cajun food, hurricanes, and caricature artists. There will be live musical performances by groups like Hurricane Gumbo from Chicago. And this is exciting: The Young Fellas Brass Band – the real thing – will be there from New Orleans. May 13 in Peoria is Carnival Time and, as the Al Johnson song goes, “Everybody’s havin’ fun.”

While it would be easy to dismiss this event as small – crawfish-boil sized – potatoes, we at disagree. We believe Mardi Gras in Peoria is every bit as authentic as Mardi Gras in New Orleans. We know that Mardi Gras is bigger than one place. Bigger than one day. Mardi Gras is a philosophy. A frame of mind. An irrepressible love of life. For us, Mardi Gras in Peoria is proof that – just like it’s always 5:00 somewhere – it’s always Mardi Gras somewhere. We take comfort in that.

So laissez les bon temps rouler, Peoria! Catch some beads for us! We’ll be with you in spirit. Heck, you might even catch us marching to Peoria.

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