PLEASE NOTE: There will be no New Orleans parades in 2021 due to Covid.
- The Krewe of Rex parade will start at the intersection of Napoleon Avenue and S. Claiborne Ave. (Highway 90) in New Orleans.
- The parade will proceed south until St. Charles Avenue, where the krewe will turn east (left).
- The Krewe of Rex will follow St. Charles all the way to Lee Circle, around the circle and back on St. Charles northward to Canal Street.
- At Canal, the parade will turn southeast (right) and follow the road to the intersection of Canal and South Peters Street where the parade will end.
With his grand traditions, rich and colorful themes, elaborate costumes and hand-painted floats, Rex is the King of Carnival.
Rex, officially the School of Design, has held more parades than any other organization. They are the origin of many Mardi Gras traditions, including the official Carnival colors of purple, green and gold, as well as the collectible doubloon coins (introduced by Rex in 1960). The Krewe consists of 600 male riders and parades on the New Orleans Uptown route on Mardi Gras day, immediately after Zulu.
Founded in 1872, the Krewe of Rex is one of the oldest participating groups in Mardi Gras. They formed in a New Orleans still recovering from the Civil War as a way to entice tourists to visit the city and businesses to put down roots in the community. The city’s businessman originally organized Rex to put on a spectacle for the visiting of Grand Duke Alexei Alexandrovich of Russia. The krewe’s official song – "If Ever I Cease to Love" – is heard throughout New Orleans in the Mardi Gras season. It is a tune that some would describe as quirky, a song from an 1870’s musical called "Bluebeard." The story goes that the song was adopted because the Grand Duke Alexis had a fondness for the actress who sang the song in the musical which was playing at the time of his visit to New Orleans.
Every year, one member of the Rex organization is selected to be Rex, the monarch of the krewe for the year. (He’s often called King Rex, but his correct title is just “Rex.”) Rex is always an influential resident involved in a multiple civic causes and philanthropic pursuits. Rex’s identity is kept secret until Lundi Gras, the day before Mardi Gras. Traditionally, the mayor hands Rex a symbolic key to the city.
- Year founded: 1872
- Membership: 440 male riders
- Number of floats: 26 floats