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Mardi Gras! Galveston Festivities Start Friday

Mardi Gras! Galveston Festivities Start Friday

Last Updated: February 15, 2022 by Lee Roane | Trip Planning, Food & Drink, Events


The third largest Mardi Gras celebration in the country starts this Friday in downtown Galveston!  We’re talking parades, concerts, balcony parties and tons of beads. If you want to save a few bucks, buy your tickets early to the downtown entertainment district as the discounted price will not be available the day of.  Here are a few things you won’t want to miss this weekend.

Clydesdayle Horses in front of The Tremont House
Preparing for the George P. Mitchell Mardi Gras Award Honoree Parade in front of The Tremont House. Feb. 18 @ 7pm

Friday, Feb. 18

Mardi Gras! Galveston begins with the George P. Mitchell Mardi Gras Award Presentation and Honoree Parade. This award was established to honor Mitchell and other individuals, corporations, foundations and groups vital to Mardi Gras’ rebirth and preservation. After the awards ceremony, the parade kicks off the party.

Umbrella Parade on The Strand
The Funky Uptown Umbrella Brigade on The Strand Feb. 18 @ 8:30pm

The big spectacle on Friday is The Funky Uptown Umbrella Brigade, which has been breaking World Records for having the most decorated umbrellas in a single parade since 2011. In 2019 an impressive 1,980 participants danced along on their route, stopping to perform the “Hokey Pokey” under the iconic Mardi Gras Arch next to The Tremont House. Over the years, fans from all around Texas have traveled to Mardi Gras! Galveston to claim a spot in the Funky Uptown Umbrella Brigade. This lively, bedazzled parade continues to gain momentum and an even bigger turn-out is predicted for 2022.

Bare Necessity Feb. 18 @ 10pm

While the parades are making their way through the streets of downtown, bands will be performing on the Corona Extra stage.  Party On! starts at 5:15pm followed by Cale and The 45s and Bare Necessity.

Mystic Krewe of Aquarius Parade Feb. 19 @ 12pm

Saturday, Feb. 19

On Saturday, the big parades, Mystic Krewe of Aquarius and Krewe of Gambrinus, start on the seawall and continue to the downtown entertainment district.  Where ever you watch them, you are guaranteed a chance to catch beads and jam to the marching bands.

Runners in the Jolly Jester Jaunt
The Jolly Jester Jaunt – Official Mardi Gras! Galveston 5k Feb. 19 @ 11am

While things are gearing up on the seawall, downtown is alive with its own action.

Runners dawning Mardi Gras themed t-shirts, socks and jester hats will “jaunt” through the Entertainment District Saturday morning for the Jolly Jester Jaunt, the official 5 Fun Run that ends with free libations and a balcony party! The free stuff is for the runners, not us lazy folks that might have a headache. For those so inclined, who can think of a better way to get some exercise and have some fun, than jaunting with your friends and family down the Strand in joker hats and crazy socks?

3 Doors Down
3 Doors Down Feb. 19 @ 5:30pm

Downtown will also be alive with music. Randy Cobio Band kicks things off at 12:30pm followed by The Slags, Jeff Canada, Jay Perez And The Band, and headliner 3 Doors Down at 5:30. Sprung gets on stage at 10pm to wrap up the night.

Decorated Art Car in Parade
Krewe d’iHeart Media Parade featuring art cars from the ArtX Group Feb. 19 @ 3pm

While the bands are on stage, several parades will make the rounds downtown.  Two hundred decorated golf carts will show their stuff during the 12th Annual Zaniest Golf Cart Parade and The Krewe d’iHeart Media Parade will feature art cars from the ArtX Group in Houston, combined with decorated jeeps from the community. Entries came from as far away as Canada to participate in the last parade.

Mariachi Band Playing on a Float
Mariachi Band during a Fiesta Gras! Parade Feb. 20 @ 1pm & 4pm

Sunday, Feb. 20

Mardi Gras! Galveston celebrates Hispanic Heritage with Fiesta Gras!, on the first Sunday.  Mardi Gras attendees can catch two parades (1:00pm & 4:00pm).  This year, the first one is being sponsored by Estrella Media and dubbed the El Norte y La Raza Parade.  The second is the Los Locos Vaqueros Parade with Roy Lopez of the Houston Texans and will feature Miss Galveston Latina, Marching Bands, Mariachi Bands & Decorated Floats throwing beads, candy & other Mardi Gras Swag.

Siggno
Siggno Feb. 20 @ 2:30pm

There will also be two Fiesta Gras! concerts downtown: LaDezz at 12pm and superstar Tejano group Siggno will headline at 2:30pm.

For tickets to the Mardi Gras! Galveston Downtown Entertainment District, featuring parades, concerts and balcony parties, click here.

Lee Roane

Lee Roane has worked on the Galveston.com website since 1994. He is interested in history and birding but will write about anything if he thinks it will help someone enjoy the island.

Lee Roane
2022-02-15T16:32:42-06:00

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