Mardi Gras Parade Schedule New Orleans
 
Krewe of Carrollton
 

Location: Uptown New Orleans, St. Charles Route
Date: February 12, 2023 - Time: 12:00 p.m.
Year Founded: 1924
Theme: "All Things Golden"
Membership Size: over 350
Krewe Website: www.kreweofcarrollton.org/


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the Krewe of Carrollton

The Krewe of Carrollton was founded by a group of local businessmen in 1924, parading on Mardi Gras Day in the neighborhood of Carrollton. In 1933, when rain forced the cancellation of most of parades, including Rex, Carrollton presented the only daytime parade of the season. Following a fire in its den in 1941, and World War II, during which there was no Mardi Gras celebration, the men of Carrollton reorganized. Carrollton is the fourth oldest parading krewe. One of the city's most popular parades, Carrollton starts the traditional parade season on the second Sunday before Mardi Gras.

Uptown parade, the Krewe of Carrollton - photo by Jules Richard

In 1924, a group calling itself "The Seventh District Carnival Club," presented its first parade on Mardi Gras day of that year with J.W. Fordyce as its King. Parading down Oak Street and around the Carrollton Avenue area of New Orleans, this club would continue to grow and eventually, in 1947, become known as the "Krewe of Carrollton".

Lead by its 4th Captain since 1947, the Krewe of Carrollton parades today on the second Sunday before Mardi Gras Day. Its membership is over 350 strong, owning and parading its own floats and Den. Although the route has changed over the years from a neighbor hood event in the Carrollton section of town, to the Mid City section of town, to its current traditional Uptown New Orleans route along St Charles Ave to Canal Street, the Krewe has maintained its identity and its image of being a Family Parade. The weekend that the parade rolls has become known as "Carrollton Weekend".

 

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Maids in Waiting, New Orleans Carnival - photo by Jules Richard

Many other continuing Mardi Gras traditions and innovations began with Carrollton. One such milestone in its rich history was when Carrollton along with a few other Krewes bought and started using farm tractors to pull the floats instead of mules. In 1950, Carrollton was the first parade to ever be pulled by tractors. These 50 plus year old tractors are still in use today.

In a tragic accident during the 1970 parade, an extremely high gust of wind toppled a float on top of the Jefferson Davis Parkway overpass, causing a krewe member to fall from the float and off that overpass and receive injuries from which he died. Coupled With that and other injuries due to that accident, all float riders in all parades are now required to wear safety belts.

The original parade route, starting from its Den on Oak Street remained for many years. In 1974, the starting point was changed to Canal Street in the Mid City area of New Orleans, to avoid having the floats going over an over pass. The route changed again in 1977 to the basic Canal Street route. In 1995 the parade was allowed to once again start from its den and travel the Uptown route. Since that time the route used has been the traditional Uptown Route.

Uptown parade, the Krewe of Carrollton - photo by Jules Richard

This Krewe has been instrumental in helping other parading organizations get off the ground. In 1957, the krewe assisted another notable parade, the Krewe of Zeus get started. Zeus was one of the first suburban parading groups, and recently celebrated its own 50th Anniversary.

Another notable parade had its beginning with the help of the Krewe of Carrollton. In 1967, the Captain of the Krewe of Carrolton helped a fledgling Krewe get started, the Krewe of Endymion. Carrollton's Captain assisted the Endymion Captain in many aspects, from writing the krewe's charter to the format of its printed Ball Program. Carrollton also rented its fleet of floats to Endymion for its inaugural parade. Endymion has gone on to be one of New Orleans "Super Krewes".

Carrolton is the Fourth oldest Carnival parading organization, behind Krewe of Rex, Krewe of Proteus, and Zulu Social Aid & Pleasure Club. Even in its humble beginnings, Carrollton itself as an organization with bold and talented leadership. Carrollton's original floats were built on the frames of garbage wagons bought from the City of New Orleans when the city started using motorized trucks.

The Krewe of Carrollton has a long and storied history. Formed by a group of Oak Street businessmen in 1924, the Krewe's modest beginnings over 80 years ago have been the foundation of a Carnival organization both widely known as a significant participant in the Carnival season, and was itself instrumental in fostering and assisting new organizations which adopted many of the Carrollton practices.

Captain of Krewe of Carrollton, circe 2015 - photo by Jules Richard
Krewe of Carrollton photo archive
 
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