Mardi Gras krewes take steps to help protect parade-goers, bal attendees from COVID-19

Here’s what you said when KSLA asked whether you will attend the 2022 processions
The Krewe of Sobek has been a part of Mardi Gras in the Shreveport area since April 2003....
The Krewe of Sobek has been a part of Mardi Gras in the Shreveport area since April 2003. "We're just following the CDC guidelines," 2022 parade chairman Michael Harris said of Sobek's plans to help protect the procession's participants and attendees from COVID-19.(Source: KSLA News 12 file photo)
Published: Jan. 12, 2022 at 4:15 PM CST
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SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) — With Carnival season now in its second week, krewes are having to keep another albeit unwelcome guest in mind as balls and parades return to the ArkLaTex.

It’s COVID-19.

Louisiana reported more than 17,000 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, Jan. 12 alone.

And as the fifth surge continues, Mardi Gras krewes are putting precautions in place to help ensure that Carnival season takes place safely.

“What we’re doing as far as bals, our indoor activity, we’re just following the CDC guidelines,” Krewe of Sobek parade Chairman Michael Harris explained.

“Everyone that’s attending the bals are asked to be vaccinated. Each of our members are going to be responsible for their tables to ensure vaccination.

So we will be masked up the entire (indoor) event to prevent the spread (of COVID-19,)” he continued. “All the tables are spaced six feet apart. And everyone is going to be encouraged to social distance.”

Harris said his krewe’s parade rules will be more relaxed since it will be outdoors.

“We’re asking our Krewes to socially distance. ... We’re asking that in the community to hang out in the corners just to kind of socially distance,” Harris added.

📢SOUND OFF: Will you be at any ArkLaTex Mardi Gras parades this year? 🎭📿😷

Posted by KSLA News 12 on Wednesday, January 12, 2022

KSLA News 12 took to Facebook to ask whether you will attend any of the ArkLaTex’s Mardi Gras parades this year.

“Not for all the Tea in China!,” Candise Holland Russell commented.

Several others replied with a succinct yes or equally terse but emphatic no.

Among those who plan to attend one or more parades are some who responded with “Absolutely!” or “Most definitely!”

And then there are commenters who elaborated on their plans. Among them are:

  • Carol Haire Miller: “Absolutely Sure hope this does not get messed up again”
  • Heather Goodman-D’Anna: “I might watch Highland from a distance”
  • Ricky Tripp: “Yep!! And not wearing a mask”
  • Leslie Ryan Dixon: “Sure will. Kim the Centaur and will tailgate at Gemini”
  • Kay Gilbert: “Only Barkus and Meoux parade”
  • Melissa Procell: Yes riding in 2 parades n going to another”
  • Robert Fant: “At the Belcher parade”
  • Donna Sutton: “Yes, I’m riding in Highland. I like the daytime parades.”
  • Nicole Richardson Tull: “if DeSoto Parish has one, then yes”

Da Shelle Bridgette was a bit more creative in outlining her plans: “Yep.....krewe of the couch...😂😂😂😂😒😒😒”

COVID-19 is a factor in why some are steering clear of the Mardi Gras parades.

  • Samantha M Canady: “Nope too much sickness going around.!!!”
  • Sherry Rowe Hussey: “No. Too much sickness for me.”
  • Jennifer Douglas: “I never been to one I know to mask up if I do but for being around a lot of people like that I can’t do it I’m praying everybody be safe have fun and enjoy”
  • Kerry Cedillo: “Folks seriously not taking precautions like wearing masks and such--even though it’s outside it’s still not safe being around others in such close proximity...”

But COVID-19 is not the only reason that some people are staying away from the parade routes.

  • Emilee Bailey: “Y’all worried about masks when y’all need to be worried about full body armor for the bullets being “thrown”!”
  • Sandy Ramsey Adkinson: “Nope— Shreveport to scary right now”
  • Leslie Bechtel: “No and it has nothing to do with covid and everything to do with the so called adults that will shove a small child on to the ground so they can get what’s the floats are throwing”
  • Ashli Mcleod: “Leslie Bechtel exactly. Didn’t go before covid, won’t go now. Adults act like children for some .50 beads 🙄”
  • Kaitlin Prosinski: “Leslie Bechtel This is what I’m worried about. My 1.5 year old would love to see it but I’m not sure I want to deal with crazy adults acting like children.”
  • Usi Flipo: “Worried about Mardi Gras???? need to be thinking about the safety of everyone of shootings,murders, Covid the new etc. So no not me my family!!! We are not safe any more this is a cruel - dark world we live in!!! And prayers to all of the ones that has lost their loved one!!! 🙏🙏🙏🙏😭😭😭💔💔💔🌹”
  • Certified Swole: “Ummm 🤔 idk 🤷🏽‍♂️ I don’t feel like getting shot this year , but I’ll support it from a far😊”
  • Traci Troup: “Between Covid and drunk people acting like toddlers, it’s a hard nope from me”

And Erin Jones has some advice for parade attendees who think about getting rowdy: “If y’all want beads and candy that bad just go buy some ain’t no need to fight over plastic and candy smh lol 😆😂”

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