Mardi Gras Grand Parade final preps

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ST. LOUIS – Final preparations are underway for this Saturday’s Mardi Gras Grand Parade in Soulard.

Lisa Hart talks to Mack Bradley about the parade and offers the following tips for a fun and safe Mardi Gras experience in Soulard.

Tips for a Safe & Fun Parade Day

1. Arrive early. You may even want to book a nearby hotel room for Friday and Saturday to eliminate parking hassles and ensure that you are here with plenty of time to spare. Several hotels are in walking distance, offer shuttles to and from, or provide access to plenty of cabs.

2. No cans, no coolers, no bottles, no backpacks. No exceptions. For public safety reasons, these items are not allowed in the festival zone. If you do somehow manage to have these items in the festival zone, you will be asked to dispose of them immediately. Note that plenty of reasonably priced food and beverage options can be found throughout the festival zone.

3. Dress for the weather. St. Louis weather is notoriously fickle, so plan appropriately. The event happens rain or shine, and you`ll be on your feet a lot so wear comfortable shoes.

4. Maximize your experience through an all-inclusive experience. Options include the Bud Light Party Tent and private tents in Hospitality Village, on the Parade Route. Several local establishments also offer all-inclusive deals.

5. Use the port-o-potties. There are thousands of portable restrooms located throughout the festival zone. The police will ticket you for not using them.

6. Don’t drive. Take the Metro, a shuttle, or a cab instead.

7. Respect the neighborhood. As one of the oldest residential and entertainment districts west of the Mississippi, Soulard is recognized as a national historic jewel. Be respectful of the neighborhood and its inhabitants. Remember, there is a zero tolerance rule for vandalism, and violators will be arrested and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.