Everything you need to know about Mardi Gras on the Alabama Gulf Coast

I’m going to give you the quick rundown of Mardi Gras on the Alabama coast. Parades. Parties. King cake. Beads. Doubloons. Moon pies. Plastic cups. More beads. (I said it would be quick.)

Alabama Gulf Coast Mardi Gras

This year Fat Tuesday falls on Feb. 13. But the first thing you need to know about this event is that Mardi Gras is more than one day. Much more. It’s an entire season of activities.

Mardi Gras Parades

The first parades on the Alabama coast start rolling mid-January. The balls start taking place early, too. And the parades themselves are more than just a parade. Folks tailgate and have their own party-within-a-party on parade days. Catching “throws” is the highlight of these parades, and riders are usually quite generous with these coveted prizes. Don’t be put off by hands-in-the-air action and yelling for the trinkets. It’s all part of the festivities.

Gulf Shores Mardi Gras Parade

In Orange Beach, parades include the Mystical Order of Mirams at 6:30 p.m. on Feb. 9 and the Mystics of Pleasure at 5:30 p.m. on Feb. 10. Also on Feb. 10, the Krewe of Les Beau Geste parade starts at 11 a.m. just up the road in Foley.

On Fat Tuesday itself, a parade starts at 10 a.m. in Gulf Shores and another rolls at 2 p.m. in Orange Beach.

Family Friendly Mardi Gras

But no words I can write would adequately describe your first Mardi Gras parade experience. So you just have to go. Enjoy for yourself the sights, sounds, smells and revelry of a coastal Carnival.