New Orleans’ Mardi Gras, one of the biggest annual parties in the United States, will be canceled in 2021, Mayor LaToya Cantrell announced on Tuesday.
People are still encouraged to find safe, creative ways to celebrate, but the iconic parades that define the traditional event will be prohibited.
In a statement, the mayor’s office said Mardi Gras is “a season of traditions that we celebrate every year, a time that the community comes together in formal, fun, and often unexpected ways. With COVID-19 cases increasing around the country, we will have to modify how to observe [Carnival] season. … We are surrounded by hot spots and we don’t know what the future holds in store for us.”
In place of parades, the mayor’s office is asking people to submit detailed plans for socially distanced celebrations. The designs must comply with all COVD-19 protocols, be flexible in scale, and avoid involving crowds of strangers.
Submissions are due by December 5, at which time they will be reviewed by the New Orleans public safety and public health team. More information about submitting an idea can be found online.