Yesterday marked the end of the 2016 Mardi Gras season. The two final krewes to roll through Houma, La. were the Krewe of Houmas and the Krewe of Kajuns.
The Krewe of Houmas departed from the Southland Mall parking lot at 11 a.m. and started on the parade route. The route follows West Park Ave. from the mall all the way downtown and ends at Town Hall on Barrow St.
The steadfast parade-goers parked their vehicles and set up their chairs on the parade route as early as 7 a.m.
The parade reached South Louisiana Bank, located on the corner of West Park Ave. and Westside Blvd., around noon. Parade-goers collectively stood and gathered near the street when the sound of sirens was in earshot.
The parade officially commenced when King Houmas LXX, Reuben Williams, passed on the first float of the day. He raised his scepter and exclaimed, “Happy Mardi Gras!” into a microphone as his pages threw hundreds of plastic doubloons into the crowd.
Eighteen floats followed behind him. The krewe members were rowdy and ready to celebrate. The 2015 Rougarou Queen, Miss Courtney Smith, also followed. Her float was an airboat being pulled by a truck and her costume matched the swamp theme.
Mixed in throughout the floats were local high school bands including color guards, dance teams and cheerleaders. These included Vandebilt Catholic, H. L. Bourgeois, South Terrebonne and Houma Junior High.
The Krewe of Kajuns directly followed with a mix of men, women and children aboard the floats, a change-up from the all-male floats that preceded.
A crowd favorite known as the Selucrey Sophistocats marched through following the first float. This group of men is a second line krewe. They wear white suits and dance with members of the crowd while handing out roses. Other dance crews like the Wildcat Stompers dance team marched later in the parade.
Miss Terrebonne Parish 2016, Lauren Carlos, proudly wore her crown as she cruised by in a silver Mustang convertible. The Terrebonne Sugar Queen 2016 passed shortly after in an orange Jeep.
The parade was at a standstill for about 20 minutes with only three floats left. This gave the crowd time to chat and bond with the krewe members stopped near them.
The final three floats then passed, including a float sponsored by the Terrebonne Association for Retarded Citizens that encouraged parade-goers to throw their beads into for them to be recycled. The crowd seemed to enjoy the opportunity to throw beads instead of catch them.
Three cleanup trucks directly followed sweeping up beads left in the street signaling the end of the Fat Tuesday festivities for this year.