Mardi Gras Indians are the Mardi Gras most people don’t see. Modern Day Indians came from a time when African Americans felt left out of the traditional Mardi Gras krewes and parades. Residents from wards around New Orleans formed their own sort of Krewe and named them after their streets or wards. The Indians created elaborate costumes and names themselves after Native Americans- as tribute to the Native American tribes’ role in freeing the slaves. They designated someone to be the Spy, the Flag boy and the Big Chief and these tribes led processions through the streets. In the past, Mardi Gras Indians were violent, but today most tribes simply act out a scene when passing other tribes. Indians do not follow any schedule or parade route and a rare thing to see on Mardi Gras.
Of course there are also a lot of beads, beer, boobs and blues:
Everyone should experience Mardi Gras in New Orleans at least once. The parades are awesome, the music is great, and there are uninhibited and inebriated college girls. There are also pickpockets, drug dealers and people who will fight you over a plastic necklace. The beer/drinks are cheap (since they deal in volume) and the streets and sidewalks flow with unmentionable liquids so you’ll need to burn your shoes afterwards. Again, everyone should experience Mardi Gras in New Orleans at least once.