Party Ideas for Mardi Gras

Party and parades are the two vital ingredients of this celebration. Some relevant theme ideas are given to make your party a perfect bash for all. So liven up your Mardi Gras Party with loads of vibes and colors: food & drinks, fun & laughter, music & dance.

Preparations:

Plan well in advance. Make a checklist - for the invitees as well as the ingredients, e.g. color, style, invitations, decor, serving, party time activities, menu, drinks, and clearing.
Clear the floor of one room to allow space for dancing. Set chairs aside but make sure that there are some comfortable areas where less lively guests can congregate and talk.

Color:

Colors mold the moods. So be wise in choosing them. Make the theme colors of Mardi Gras your base, from invitation cards to decoration. Well, you have options. You can either go in for a multicolor decor - catching the real carnival spirit. This also makes it easy for you to match colors of ingredients. But even if you base with a particular color as much as possible, it really soothes the eyes. Mardi green is good and looks real funky. Or you can pick up golden color your base to give it a sort of majestic look.

Style:

Decide the theme whether it is going to be a Bourbon Street party, a fancy dress party, a pancake party, or a block party. And adopt accordingly.

Bourbon Street party:

Recreate the spirit of the New Orleans parade with balloons and inflatable dolls of all colors and designs resembling the Bourbon Street characters. For instance, the Hydra, Medusa, the Unicorn, the Sphinx, Metamorphosis and the likes.

Fancy dress party:

Mardi Gras fancy dress partyThe idea is to stress on the costumes which must be of bright colors and impressive designs to liven up the carnival spirit. The costumes can be of any characters from the fairy tales to the latest comic strips, from circus party performers to lively flamenco dancers.
Also you can serve each of the invitees a Mardi Gras cap with various carnival characters taped on each of them. You can provide them with masks, or, ask them to come with one.

Pancake party:

Make it a pancake theme party by setting up a buzzer that emits a bell (use your imagination to take it as the 'pancake bell' used to be rung by the Churches on Shrove Tuesday). Then serve pancakes to the guests. And arrange for a pancake eating competition. One who can eat the large size pancake first the fastest eater first will be awarded with something, say a kiss from the eldest in the host's family.

You can also turn it into a King Cake party and bake a king size cake for the guests with a small plastic doll hidden inside it. The idea is, whoever discovers the baby in his or her share is crowned as the king or queen and must host the next King Cake party.

Block party:

For this your backyard is the safest. Before getting started check out with the local met office bulletin. If everything suits, decorate the place with festoons and flags of lively Mardi Gras colors. Use other items as are given in the decor.
The idea is to relive the old tradition of community party on this day where all residents of the block are invited. Also it helps setting up a natural carnival spirit with guests in small groups engaged in different activities.While sending invitation you may ask each of them to come up with one vegetable for the gumbo. You'll be surprised to end up with a sizeable variety of

ingredients.

For safety reasons, place the barbecue grill away from fences or other combustible material. Do not light up right next to your neighbor's back door. And place it on a stable, level surface and away from the common pathway. Use firelighters or a commercial barbecue lighting fuel for charcoal. NO gasoline, paraffin or spirits on to a smoldering bonfire.

Invitation:

Even if the invitation cards are bought up, try to leave a personal touch on them. After all we all nurture an expectation for being cared personally. It reminds the guests of the kind of importance you attach on them. Also breaking the convention attract people's attention.
Well, if you have time and willingness try to do the invitation letters on your own. Here again being unconventional makes them attractive. Write them on cheap, cork beer coasters.
Create tiny gift-wrapped packages. Write the info on the outside, or on a slip of paper inside.
Sometimes certain old tricks still work. Blow up colored balloons. Write the invitation in contrasting colors on it. Deflate the balloons fully. And mail them.

Decor:

Have colorful streamers, party poppers, masks and paper-hats in plenty. Keep scissors, glue, tapes, rolls colored strings, ribbons, colored papers and a stair-case ladder (not recommended for those below 15)to hang up the decor items.

*Put up streamers, banners and balloons printed with "Happy Mardi Gras" messages.
*Hang colorful paper ribbons across the walls or the ceiling.
*Giant props are always fun. For the same reason, when things are ten times bigger than they should be, people derive the fun from them.
*Glue various trinkets in abundance across the room and on the dinner or buffet tables.
*Catch up the Carnival parade mood. Hang them each by a string wherever you like.
*Also have balloons - purple, green and gold. Fasten them up together in groups of three or more using wire or tape or whatever, and hang them freely. Get a collection of various masks. From dragons and monsters to divines and fairies, beasts and pirates to circus clowns.
*Also you can use print out characters or images related to Mardi Gras celebration. Cut them out, and attach them to the straw hats by making slits at the top and bottom with scissors. Or, tape them to paper cups, place cards, balloons, or banners. Or you can use stickers. Fix them on to paper cups, place cards, balloons, or banners.
*Lastly be particular about the ambience so that it moves in perfect harmony with the mood of the party.

While decoration is the first step to tone up the right mood of the theme, much of its implications lie in the activities.

Serving:

Oven-to-table dishes must be in good condition. Always clean the outside of dishes and the rims before taking them to the table. Take care, however, not to crack a hot dish b wiping it with a wet cloth. Clean up the dish during the cooking process to avoid any baked-on residue.

Remember to warm plates before serving hot food.

If a cold first course is plated in advance, do not leave it to dry out before serving; keep each plate covered with plastic wrap.

If the main course is plated and sauced before being taken to the table, always wipe away any small drips or spills before presenting the dish.

While serving the main course at the table; plan one that is easy to carve or serve, or be prepared to cope with the problem in advance.

For a dance party start with a light supper, served early on in the evening before the music starts. This is done so as not to detract from the main event, the dancing. Light snacks may be offered much later.

For a dance until dawn party a formal buffet may precede the dancing which may be dotted with light snacks and drinks break. And finally a breakfast buffet may be served in the wee hours of the next day.

Well, there may be variations in these ideas which depends ultimately on the personal preference.

Cleaning:

Proper care should be taken for cleaning up all party leftovers. Anything reusable should be set aside before hand from the ones condemned to the trash bin.

Before putting down the plates at the sink or dish washer empty all food residues from them into a separate trash bag.
Before rushing the tablecloths to the washing machine, brush off all spilled food items, if any, with a duster.
When all the plates and table cloths are removed take care of the floor. Sweep away all the garbage collected on the carpet before vacuum cleaning it.

Use a quality cleaning liquid to remove the dried up glue from the walls, door mantles and all the places adornments had been stuck.

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