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Opelousas Mardi Gras parade back in the swing of things

Posted at 3:00 PM, Mar 05, 2019

The Opelousas Mardi Gras Parade is back!

It used to be the Frank’s Half Fast parade, but now that the poboy shop is under new management it’s back, with a new name: the Opelousas Imperial Parade. This year, everybody was welcome to participate.

To read about that, click here.

“Baww I’m so excited,” yelled Jessica Fontenot. Her excitement echoed by everyone along the route.

Antoher attendee, Olivia Gross, hadn’t been back home for Mardi Gras in nearly 30 years.

She knew she had to make a trip when her hometown was getting a new parade.

“And I made a special trip just for the Mardi Gras, the hospitality, the boudin, the gumbo, the crabs, the crawfish,” she laughed.

She lost her voice during the parade, but she said that’s part of the joy of Mardi Gras.

“I wanted to come, wanted to remember and feel the ambiance like when I was a kid,” said Gross.

Families like the Fontenot’s are here for exactly that. They had been camped out in their spot since 8 am.

“Packed the car up last night, had it ready, got here this morning, unpacked it all, got the barbecue pit. We good,” said Jessica Fontenot.

In New Orleans they have the Muses shoe, the Nyx purse and the Zulu coconut. But here today in Opelousas, they had a sweet potato.

82-year-old Gilda Soileau showed everyone how she caught all of her fun throws, by dancing.

Locals said they hope the parade sticks around in the coming years.

“It’s the one day you can be crazy and put anything on and no one can look at you like youre stupid,” said one woman, Lynn Meche, at the parade decked out in costume with her friends.

Here’s some video from the parade. To see a slide show, scroll down.