You don’t need to be in New Orleans to get the full Fat Tuesday experience. Here are five local ways to celebrate the French-European tradition.
- One of the largest Cincinnati Mardi Gras traditions is the MainStrasse Village Pub Crawl in Covington. The party starts with a Big Head parade through the streets, kicking off at 7 p.m. at the Goose Girl Fountain with performances from Nick Denham, the Red Hot Dancing Queens, and the Blues Brothers. The pub crawl starts at 8:30 p.m., and will lead attendees through bars in MainStrasse Village.
Saturday, March 2, 6 p.m. to midnight, 601 Main Street, Covington, (606) 491-0458, facebook.com/mainstrassevillage
- Get the full Bourbon Street experience at Igby’s in the heart of downtown. Take a sip off the venue’s special Mardi Gras menu, which features the Hurricane, the New Orleans Buck, and the Fleur-de-Tea. This is a three-day event on Friday, Saturday, and Fat Tuesday itself. Own your anonymity at Saturday’s Masquerade Ball while you dance to DJ Fuseamania while wearing a mask, only to reveal yourself at the end of the night. Igby’s is also offering a free slice of king cake with the purchase of a drink off the Mardi Gras Menu on Tuesday, and a $25 4EG gift card to whomever finds the baby in their slice of cake.
March 1, 2, and 5, 4 to 10 p.m., 122 E. Sixth Street, Downtown, (513) 246-4396, igbysbar.com
- Donate your night to a great cause at the Mardi Gras for Homeless Children fundraiser at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center in Covington. The event will feature the best cuisine from over 45 different local restaurants and musical performances from Robin Lacy & DeZydeco and the Beechwood Marching Band. Proceeds from this event benefit Welcome House, Bethany House Services, and the Brighton Center’s Homeward Bound Shelter.
Tuesday, March 5, 6:30 to 10 p.m., 1 W. Rivercenter Blvd., Covington, (859) 291-6572, mardigras2019.org
- Take a ride on the Cincy Brew Bus to Mardi Gras in Mason—a progressive beer tasting and dinner, including a trip to three Mason craft breweries, complete with nine different beers and menus full of Cajun and Creole foods. The bus will depart from Sonder Brewing on Duke Blvd. in Mason at 7 p.m. and guests will eventually visit 16Lots Brewing Company for pizza and three styles of beer, and the Common Brewery Company for king cake, ales, porters, stouts, and lagers. The event’s organizers promise a “carnival of the senses,” so make sure to come hungry and thirsty.
Tuesday, March 5, 7 to 11 p.m., 8584 Duke Blvd., Mason, (513) 258-7909, cincybrewbus.com
- Support the community of Price Hill by attending the Price Hill Will Mardi Gras Ball complete with dinner, music, and drinks. The event features a Cajun dinner catered by New Orleans to Go/Mardi Gras on Madison accompanied by musical entertainment from the MYCincinnati youth orchestra program. Stay later and dance through the after-party with Cincinnati’s own New Orleans-style band, the Hot Magnolias. All proceeds benefit the Price Hill Will, which advocates for physical, civic, social, and economic development of the Price Hill community.
Friday, March 1, 6:30 to 11:30 p.m., 2110 St Michael Ave, Price Hill, (513) 251-3800, pricehillwill.org