FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA) — We’re one week away from the Annual Fayetteville Mardi Gras Parade. We got an inside look at the float building process.
The people who put it all together are known as the Krewe of Olympia. Lead organizer Lee Ann Kendrick said they started building the float about 5 to 6-weeks ago. About 40 members, meet every week to saw, cut and add glitter to the float which will hit the road next week. Kendrick said they are ready to “Laisser les bons temps rouler” which means let the good times roll.
In 1992, a couple of Mardi Gras enthusiasts got together for Fat Tuesday over a cajun dinner celebration. From there, the Krewe of Olympia was born and a small gathering has grown into a parade.
Judith Matthews has been a member for over 20 years – she’s making it a family tradition getting her daughter and granddaughter in on the festivities. “Even on lousy weather days it’s fun but when the sun is shining and there is lots of people out there and we’re throwing beads… everybody is excited. It’s a lot of great energy and the kids love it. It’s a great thing for families.”
This year there are about 20 entrees for the parade which kicks off at the Fayetteville square.
It ends at the Walton Art Center parking lot where a king and queen will be announced.
There’s still time to join the parade — you can decorate a wagon, a golf cart, or even a bicycle. Just don’t forget to have your beads.
The festivities take place on February 22 at 2pm. A portion of the money raised will be donated to the seven hills homeless shelter.