Mardi Gras may be about indulgence and debauchery, but you’ve got to be serious about your preparations. Die hard revelers actually sleep next to the parade route overnight or bring their frat buddy’s beat-up couch out to the median. This isn’t entirely necessary, but you should still get out to the route early to avoid some traffic and to secure a good spot. Use a tarp or blanket to stake out your space.
Natives of cities like Mobile, Alabama and New Orleans seem born with Mardi Gras survival skills—what to bring, where to park, where to pee. Newcomers to Mardi Gras in the Gulf South are at a disadvantage, but this guide should level the playing field come parade time (February 16th this year).