Going through your first Mardi Gras can be stressful, but there are a few things you can do beforehand to better prepare yourself for the five days of craziness. No one is ever to explain what Mardi Gras fully encompasses or what to expect going into it. The city is unlike any other time, with streets closed down, restaurants closed, and days turning into night before you know it.
Food. Hydrating all day means eating at the right time and enough to keep going throughout the day and into parties at night. My friends all went to Winn Dixie a week before Mardi to stock up on snacks and microwaveable food. We were told every place is closed so we needed to have food in our rooms to last us the whole time. This isn’t entirely true. While most places close down, a lot stay open and are available on Postmates too. Jazmine, Dat Dog, Cafe Du Monde, and a few other places are open, even though you may have trouble getting there. No matter what, you should still stock up your room with all sorts of snacks. Cereal, pretzels, goldfish, chips, all the necessities for late night eating.
Breakfast is also tricky because the start time for each day changes. Having bars and cereal in the room is perfect for rushed mornings when you sleep in. The LBC is open for some of Mardi so Panera is an option also. Satsuma stays open also, so if there is a day that starts later then this is the best move to make. Having a full breakfast can be a game-changer when it comes to partying all day.
Another tip: napping. Your first time doing Mardi is exhausting. Your body never goes through something like this and there is no way to prepare it for what is to come. Even though parades are what Marid is all about, sometimes you have to realize that a nap is way more necessary to help you get through a day. I didn’t go to any parades and even though I have a little bit of regret, I know it was for the best. Getting to the parades is hard enough, keeping track of your friends adds to the difficulty, and having to keep up your energy to then go out after is a whole different story.
One more tip to get you through Mardi is a fanny pack. Nowadays there are so many cute fanny packs that they are so worth getting to go with your outfit every day. I always had mine full of things that I really needed throughout the day. I either kept pretzels or goldfish in there, which was SO NECESSARY. I also kept as many external chargers in there that I could fit. Whether you run out of battery or your friend does, neither make it easier for anyone. Going to CVS right before and getting three different external chargers is easy and efficient for when the time comes. I also kept a list of my friends’ phone numbers on a piece of paper in my fanny pack for a time with no service and in case of getting lost at any point.
All of these additional tips can be so helpful when the time finally comes to get your Mardi on. The five days are crazy and hectic enough as is, and doing a few of these things to prepare will only help in the long run. No matter what, you’ll have a fun Mardi Gras because, you know, it’s Mardi Gras and how can you not have fun, right?