Future Mardi Gras Fat Tuesday Dates
Future Dates are Feb. 5th, 2008; Feb. 24th, 2009. These dates are the LAST day of Mardi Gras celebrations, which would be Fat Tuesday.
Mobile Mardi Gras is the ORIGINAL one and is still done traditionally. Mobile was founded in 1702; New Orleans in 1718. I am from the Miss. Gulf Coast and have family in New Orleans French Quarter as well so I know Mardi Gras. Mobile's is the BEST due to tradition, safety, but also there are very large crowds. Mobilians throw MoonPies, a cookie/marshmallow type treat, Ramen noodles, you name it.
My suggestion is to come in the previous weekend ( the dates Feb. 2nd, Sunday the 3rd (which is Joe Cain Day-the People's Parade)). Make reservations for a downtown hotel up to a year in advance. You are competing with locals for rooms.
If you don't get in a downtown hotel, don't worry. Drive down and park close to Broad Street in the Oakleigh Garden DIstrict (just South of Government Street). Have a drink at Callaghan's Irish Pub in the Oakleigh area (corner of Marine/ Charleston) and get a hamburger.
If the parade is at 6:30 pm, leave by 6:55 pm.
Then walk one block to Broad and take left. Stand at either Govt./Broad at the Big white church (2 blocks north) or stand at end of Church/Broad (one block north) This is where many Oakleigh Garden District residents stand. It's safe, I promise! It may be a little urban for you but it is safe.
Or cross the barricade where you see a Police Officer, usually where Canal turns north onto Broad. We like to cross and just get more room over on the other side. If you walk a little way, you can hit the parade twice! I think at Washington Street.
Or you can drive I-10 to Water Street exit, head North. This is the street that runs along the waterfront (which ironically you can't see!). There is a median and yes, you can park here. Parking is anything goes as long as you are NOT on a parade route. The only bad thing is you must get there earlier. For instance, 6:30 pm parade- get there by 6:00 pm.