Skip to comments.'Gay Mardi Gras' Is New Orleans' Labor Day Fling
Posted on 09/04/2009 2:52:16 PM PDT by balch3
onathan Bray, one of the organizers of Southern Decadence, a celebration that has become known as the gay Mardi Gras, spent his time this week getting ready for the big party and watching weather reports.
"I looked out in the Gulf and didn't see a storm," Bray said. "No Katrina, no Gustav. I'm so happy."
In the almost four decades since it started, Southern Decadence has become a traditional Labor Day weekend, end-of-summer, event. But for two of the last four years, hurricanes crashed the French Quarter-centered party. Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and Gustav last year both generated evacuation orders for the city and brought the festivities to a screeching halt.
"It's the first thing everybody asks," Bray said. "Can they get their money back if there's a hurricane. We tell them they can, but this year they won't need to worry about it."
Still the lingering effect of the hurricanes and the evacuations have taken their toll, said Tim Lawrence, 35, a hotel manager.
"Our projected occupancy is down and I think that's because of the hurricanes," Lawrence said. "After Katrina it took months to be able to refund guests' money because of credit card disputes. And even with refunds you still had to pay airfare and find a way to leave with the evacuation."
The event started as a birthday party bar crawl with about a dozen New Orleans residents making the French Quarter circuit, Bray said. It has grown to one of the major gay events in the country, attracting about 100,000 people in the past, a welcome economic boost for French Quarter merchants during one of the slowest tourist periods.
"It's a crowd with disposable income and they enjoy themselves," said Mary Beth Romig of the New Orleans Metropolitan Convention and Visitors Bureau. "And it's
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Filthy disease ridden queers celebrating their filthy disease ridden queerness. Yet one more reason to stay out of New Orleans.
Indeed He is not, it's all in that big book He keeps.
After spending billions, we visited it this summer, and it´s still a PIT...slums and not much hope. People need to move out and NOT expect everyone else to send them money to build in below sea level in a swamp with the scum.
They are going to get hit with amnother hurricane. It’s inevitable. And since all they’ve done, is rebuild the same crap they had before, in the same at risk areas as before...They are all going to drown just like before.
Does your hotel room have wireless?
As an aside, I hear that last week in Raleigh there was a "Katrina Survivor Reunion."
Over 4,000 attended.
That's too bad.
That's too bad.
(There, that's better.)
Southern Decadence, a celebration that has become known as the gay Mardi Gras
Since when was Mardi Gras non-gay?
They should move the event to the US Embassy in Kabul.
South Texans! Honker down for more hurricans coming down the alley.
Regular Mardi Gras is already pretty gay... I’m not sure people would notice the difference.
We went to Mardi Gras the Feb prior to Katrina. Once is enough.
You can bet your ass it does, pirate boy, high speed!
I hope you got yer pink pumps to fit yer peg-leg, cause Squantos and Larry are gonna dance yer fat fanny off!
My dance card is full. He’s gonna have to ho hiself out ......again
Eeeek I wouldn’t bring that stolen dog with ya to NOLA.