At the annual Mardi Gras party held at Holy Angels Catholic Church on the Friday before Fat Tuesday, a few changes from past years were in evidence.
The party is sponsored by he Holy Angels’ Columbiettes under the direction of Adreann Belle, who is a New Orleans native.
“It has become our biggest fundraiser,” Belle said. “All of the proceeds go to charity. We do a lot of work with special-needs children, particularly autism. And also local food banks.”
Some of those changes for 2018 included a photo booth where Mardi Gras revelers could get their picture taken for a memento of the evening and the traditional Mardi Gras parade boasted two floats this year, up from one. Andrea Jarrell operated the photo booth, saying at the beginning of the evening, “I think this is going to be a lot of fun.” Jarrell added that she was going to put the year on the finished prints so the photos would be a memento of the year.
After dinner, when the Mardi Gras parade got started, Don Belle, master of ceremonies for the evening, led the parade with a float built on a red wagon featuring a bust of Elvis that has led the parade for a number of years. Following Belle this time was another wagon float carrying a jester. Belle invited everyone to bring a float next year.
For the first year since the Mardi Gras party began, Melva Houston did not serve as Master of Music. She turned over the microphone to Rodney Glidewell and instead served in an honorary capacity.
It became obvious that a great many guests were first-time visitors when Don Belle asked for a show of hands of those who had never attended before. “I’m enjoying learning about Mardi Gras,” said Angela Carter, who had learned of the event the week before, at a meeting of the National Association of University Women.
Jonathan and Norma Snow of Dobson read about the event in The Mount Airy News and decided to buy tickets. “I’ve enjoyed it. The food was good,” said Jonathan Snow. His wife Norma had some issues with the New Orleans food. “I don’t like black pepper,” she said. The filé gumbo was a little hot for her, but the seafood gumbo was more to her liking.
Later in the evening, Mrs. Snow danced up a storm in the second line, waving a gold handkerchief as if she had been doing it for years, while Mr. Snow cheered her on from their table.
Reach Bill Colvard at 336-415-4699.