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Upcoming Events

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17th Annual Martin…

Jan 29 - Mar 7, 2015
Join us for the 17th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Art… more

Alliance Francaise

Jan 29 - 31, 2015
Learn French with the Alliance Française- now in METAIRIE! Our next… more

Andrew Jackson: Hero…

Jan 29 - Mar 29, 2015
THNOC's exhibition tracks Jackson's rise from humble beginnings to immortality… more

Artist Spotlight…

Jan 29 - Mar 31, 2015
New Orleans-based woodturning artist Tom Dunne will be the featured artist in… more

BODY ELECTRIC Group…

Jan 29 - Mar 1, 2015
Inspired by Walt Whitman's "I Sing the Body Electric", this… more

House of Blues…

Jan 29 - 29, 2015
Deputy combines island sounds with drum and base. His performances are unique… more

Le Petit Theatre…

Jan 29 - 30, 2015
Broadway's first rock opera by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice illuminates the… more

Maple Leaf Bar…

Jan 29 - 29, 2015
Come join us for Johnny Vidacovich, Mike Dillon & Brian Haas. more

Music at the Mint…

Jan 29 - 29, 2015
Vocal ensemble. more

Ogden After Hours…

Jan 29 - 29, 2015
Join us for Ogden After Hours featuring Jonathan Freilich. more

The Columns Hotel…

Jan 29 - Mar 26, 2015
The Historical Columns Hotel with its "sophiscicated atmosphere" and… more

The Gasperi…

Jan 29 - Feb 22, 2015
Richard Gasperi opened Gasperi Gallery in the French Quarter in 1980.… more

The New Orleans…

Jan 29 - Nov 18, 2015
Marvel Universe LIVE! will captivate audiences with an authentic and original… more

The Trio feat. Johnny…

Jan 29 - 29, 2015
Join us for The Trio feat. Johnny Vidacovich & special guests. … more

Warehouse Grille…

Jan 29 - 29, 2015
Warehouse Grille, presents a live performance by Troy Sawyer and The Elementz… more

Big Chief Bo Dollis …

Jan 30 - 30, 2015
 Join us for the visitation and musical tribute for the  iconic Mardi… more

Friday Nights at NOMA

Jan 30 - 30, 2015
Every Friday evening, come to the museum for activities and entertainment from… more

House of Blues…

Jan 30 - 30, 2015
Slippery When Wet is a Bon Jovi tribute band, titled after Bon Jovi's third… more

In The Mood- A 1940’S…

Jan 30 - 30, 2015
Hop aboard the "Chattanooga Choo Choo" to "Tuxedo… more

Lauren Sturm - Bayou…

Jan 30 - 30, 2015
Performs solo acoustic piano. more

17th Annual Martin…

Jan 29 - Mar 7, 2015
Join us for the 17th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Art… more

The Party's Restarted: Mardi Gras World Open

They don't call this a party town for nothing.

Recovering from the ravages of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, artists are eagerly returning to the task of crafting puckish icons for Mardi Gras parades.

The pre-Lenten Mardi Gras celebrations here boast masquerade balls and raucous merrymaking that gain worldwide attention. And for Blaine Kern, the 78-year-old known as "Mr. Mardi Gras," a little joy is exactly what this town needs.

"Yes, there will be Mardi Gras parades!" declares Kern, whose family operates Kern Studios, a Mardi Gras assembly line. "Everybody wants to do it," he says. "We are going to show the world that we are still alive and want to have fun."

Part of Kern's operation is Mardi Gras World, an Algiers warehouse where the notoriously creative Kern family and its legion of artists work their magic, churning out floats and fantasies for virtually all of Mardi Gras’ biggest parades. Thousands come to Mardi Gras World every year to watch the artists at work and get a behind-the-scenes glimpse of the artistry behind the fantastic spectacle of Mardi Gras.

On Monday, Oct. 17, Mardi Gras World reopened for the first time since Hurricane Katrina to offer its popular tours. Mardi Gras World is open for business from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. daily, with the last tour at 4:30 p.m. Reservations are only required for 10 or more.

Daily tours begin with fantasy and fun from the beginning: Colorful Mardi Gras props, like a gigantic jovial jester, fiercely realistic alligators, and a gorgeously exciting Marilyn Monroe with skirt flying greet one and all to this amazing factory. After a brief introduction by a knowledgeable guide and a spirited video about the history of Mardi Gras and the company, visitors can dress up in authentic, ornate carnival costumes. Free king cake and hot New Orleans coffee is served!

During the self-guided portion of the tour, visitors enter a maze of amazing props of all sizes. In one area, heaps of props await repair, while artists, painters, and sculptors create their masterpieces. Next, the tour enters the "den" (float artists' warehouse). It is a big carpentry and paint shop, where workers build and decorate sensational floats. For each "krewe" (club), artists paint each float with brightly-colored themed scenes. Gold and silver foil as well as thousands of fiberoptic lights on the sides of the floats glisten and glow. The floats appear as colorful and animated as any imaginative Hollywood movie.

A tasty lunch of New Orleans delicacies is also served daily from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. for $10 per person. Special tour rates apply for adults, seniors and children.

Mardi Gras World is also available to rent for spectacular special events.

Meanwhile, Kern and his artists are revving up for a Mardi Gras that many are seeing as New Orleans’ post-Katrina coming out party. February 28, 2006, will mark the 150th anniversary of the first formal Mardi Gras parades in New Orleans. But more importantly, Mardi Gras 2006 will be a celebration of the rebirth of New Orleans and a demonstration of its enduring character and spirit.

The City Council has unanimously given its blessing to carnival krewe captains to proceed with their plans for Mardi Gras 2006. So far, 31 krewes have announced their intentions to parade. The Mayor’s Mardi Gras Coordinating Committee is next meeting in mid-November to present a parade calendar and information about routes. Though Mardi Gras will be scaled down relative to previous years, it is expected to be a tremendously jubilant, spectacular and emotion affair.

While air-brushing a giant parrot, Mardi Gras World artist Charles Bendzans says that the Mardi Gras parades must go on.

"This is what we do here - have fun," Bendzans says, spraying turquoise paint on the bird. "Mardi Gras is a frame of mind."

Daily Tours:
Doors open: 9:30 am
Last Tour: 4:30 pm

School Tours:
Children PreK-6th Grade: $3.50
Children 7th-12th Grade: $6.50
Chaperons: $6.50
Teachers and Transportation Driver: FREE

(Limit 150 Students per tour)
Admission prices include King Cake & Drink!

Mask Making
Learn how to create your own Mardi Gras Mask
with feathers and glitter! All materials furnished
$4.00 extra for each child.

Pizza Lunches with Fresh Fruit and Beverage
$4.00 extra for each child through 6th grade,
plus teachers and chaperons.
$5.00 extra for each child 7th-12th grade,
plus teachers and chaperons

Group Tours:
Adults, age 12 and above: $9.50
Children, 4-11: $5.00
Children, 3 and under: FREE
Seniors: $9.00

*All tours include free King Cake & Coffee!
Reservations are only Required for 10 or more, so just stop by!
Don't forget your camera!


Adults: $15.00
Children 11 and under: $7.25
Seniors: $11.00
Student w/ college or high school ID: $11.00

*All tours include free King Cake & Coffee!
Reservations are only Required for 10 or more, so just stop by!
Don't forget your camera!

Cooking classes available by appointment.

Facility available for private functions.