Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Mardi Gras: Whoever Dies with the Most Beads Wins

All the wonderful photos in this entire post are from Ray Devlin's Photostream

Mardi Gras is famous for 'Throws'... the act of throwing beads from the parade floats to the onlookers. It's a time-honored tradition started in the early 1870's by the Twelfth Night Revelers.

Some historians theorize that the tradition has roots in a pagan post-winter ritual, during which lucky peasants who'd survived the cold months celebrated by throwing milled grain into the fields—an offering of gratitude to the deity (or deities) who had given them enough food to last.

I have heard it said that geologists say the heavy weight of beads from Mardi Gras stored over many years in the attics of houses in New Orleans is what sunk the houses below sea level!

Waiting with anticipation for the next float...

Even Parade Marshall's like Kevin Costner get to throw!

Beads ready-to-throw...

Some throws go wide of the mark and end up hanging in the trees...

And even the Pups get beads!

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