Mardi Gras is this coming Tuesday, February 25th. Although this is not New Orleans, that doesn’t mean the Lowcountry doesn’t know how to celebrate it.
An interesting side note: visitors to the area often describe Charleston as “a clean New Orleans.”
The biggest area celebration used to be Folly Gras, a street festival on Folly Beach. Last year it got a little too rowdy, so they decided to retire the event. However, there are plenty of other options to celebrate Shrove Tuesday that have sprung up in its wake.
Mardi Gras at LoLA
Perhaps the best place around Charleston to get authentic Louisiana cuisine is LoLA (“Lowcountry Louisiana”) at Park Circle. So it comes as no surprise that they’d be throwing a good Mardi Gras party. Actually, they’ll be celebrating all weekend long, plus on the day itself.
Tonight they’re hosting Mardi Gras Friday, a special happy hour from 4:30 – 7:30. There will be live music from Ric McCants & The Cats, plus plenty to eat and drink.
Saturday is the Mardi Gras Block Party from noon till 6:00 p.m. Get set for a crawfish boil, street bar, food truck, and plenty of live music from the likes of Sidewalk Zydeco, Johnny Ace and Davis Coen.
Then on Sunday, join them for a Mardi Gras Brunch, complete with Creole Bloody Marys, mimosas and music by Hot Club of Charleston. It’s going on from 11:00 a.m. till 3:00 p.m.
On Mardi Gras itself, they’ll celebrate Fat Tuesday with Hurricanes, another crawfish boil and the ever-popular King Cake. LoLA is located at 4830 O’Hear Avenue in North Charleston.
Or try a Mardi Gras Bar Crawl
If you’re in the mood to take your celebrating to the streets, you are in luck. Saturday from 1:00 p.m. till 9:00 p.m. is a roving party on upper King Street in downtown Charleston. You are encouraged to wear your best Mardi Gras attire. Yes, there will be beads and feathers.
Organized by Blue Steel Promotions, the Mardi Gras Bar Crawl on King starts with check-in at The Brick on Ann Street, where you can pick up scorecards and some swag. Then make your way among the other venues: Charleston Beer Works, Silver Dollar, Republic, John King, and Deco.
Tickets range from $20 – $35, and part of the proceeds goes to the Charleston Animal Society. According to their website, drinking is 100% optional. Good to know.
Also – Special Update about the High Water Festival
Now that SEWE has officially kicked off festival season in Charleston, one of the most exciting ones coming up – the High Water Festival – announced some good news. For the first time ever, they are offering daily tickets.
The festival will be Saturday and Sunday, April 18th and 19th. The lineup is stellar – Nathaniel Rateliff, Shovels & Rope (who curate the festival), Andrew Bird and more on Saturday, Wilco, the legendary Mavis Staples, Brittany Howard and a slew of others on Sunday.
You’d better hurry as tickets are going fast. VIP weekend passes are already sold out. Daily passes are available as either general admission or the “Platinum Pearl Experience.” Get tickets here.
So celebrate a little of New Orleans in the Holy City, and get those High Water tickets while you can. And do give us a call at EP – after all, one of our Isle of Palms vacation rentals makes an ideal festival home base.
your Isle of Palms vacation blogger