(Rick Hickman / American Press)
Last Modified: Wednesday, February 13, 2013 3:08 PM
Amy Bruney of Lake Charles waited for the Krewe of Krewes parade to start Tuesday with her husband and her 4-year-old son, Kayden.
“This is my son’s first time coming to a Mardi Gras parade,” Bruney said as she tailgated with her family on Ryan Street. “We wanted to come, so that he could experience this.”
Kayden said he couldn’t “wait to catch some beads” and looked forward to “having fun” with his family.
The Bruneys joined thousands of Southwest Louisiana residents and tourists who attended the Krewe of Krewes parade, which marked the conclusion of Mardi Gras. The parade started on time, despite concerns about the weather.
Becky Morton, from Lake City, Texas, went to the parade with her daughter and her finance.
“We had to come all this way for Mardi Gras,” Morton said. “Of course there is New Orleans, but we like the ambiance in Lake Charles.”
Morton arrived Sunday and will leave Lake Charles today.
“Even though it was raining, my grandson was in the Children’s Parade, so we got out there with umbrellas in the rain,” Morton said. “If it gets too wet, we get inside. But the rain isn’t going to stop us.”
Jacob Willis of Moss Bluff went to the parade with friends and his four daughters and son. They started tailgating at 8 a.m. Tuesday.
“Mardi Gras is a tradition in our family,” said Willis, who also attended three balls with his family.
Willis, who is Catholic, said Mardi Gras is all about everyone having a good time before Lent.
“Lent is about giving up things you love in memory of Christ,” Willis said. “Everyone is in good spirits.”
Paula Nixon said she’s lived in Lake Charles for more than 30 years and attended Tuesday’s parade with her best friend and granddaughter.
“My daughter is on a float, so we’re looking forward to seeing her,” Nixon said.
She said her favorite part about Mardi Gras is the balls.
“You dress up and have a big party,” Nixon said. “It’s a lot of fun.”
Seven-year-old Sydney Golden, Nixon’s granddaughter, said she likes to catch candy and beads.
Karen Francis of Lake Charles went with her grandchildren and daughter.
“We’re looking forward to having a great time. We just want to enjoy ourselves,” Francis said. “The rain won’t stop us. I have a cap on and a jacket. We love the parades.”
Francis said Mardi Gras is a tradition she wants to leave with her grandchildren.
Melissa Soileau of Welsh went to the parade with her children and husband, and said the weather has no effect on whether she’ll show up.
“We’ll be here if it’s freezing cold or if it’s hot and yucky,” Soileau said. “I love to come out and watch the goofy people.”
Chris Warner of Lake Charles attended the parade with friends.
“Mardi Gras is the best part of the year — to get together with friends and have a good time,” Warner said.
Iowa-native Pierre Barras attended events over the past three days, but said Mardi Gras is the most fun.
“We have been hanging out all day and having fun,” Barras said. “The kids had their day Sunday. Today is grown-ups’ day.”