Every year, New York's usual anxiety and chaotic charm turns laissez-faire via the Crescent City for Mardi Gras. NYC’s Fat Tuesday is a typically rambunctious affair, featuring jazz performances at some of the best jazz clubs in the city, plus more funky shows. There also rich cuisine from Cajun restaurants, king cake and some of the best parties in New York. So, for your celebratory pleasure, here's our roundup of the city's best Big Easy events.
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When is Mardi Gras?
Mardi Gras is on Tuesday, February 13, 2018.
What is Mardi Gras?
Mardi Gras (french for "Fat Tuesday") is a Carnival celebration that takes place the day before Ash Wednesday. People celebrate and feast before the Lenten season begins.
Mardi Gras in NYC events
George Clinton—the one and only Uncle Jam and author of (deep breath) Brothas Be, Yo Like George, Ain't That Funkin' Kinda Hard on You?—lands the mothership for a night of ass-liberating funk. Here the funk innovator hosts what's become an annual Mardi Gras celebration for a sixth straight year.
Day drinkers, start your engines. This eight-hour Mardi Gras hooplah kicks off at noon in a sprawling two-story sports bar in Midtown. Tunes comes courtesy of DJs Copenhagen and Pim, live musicians keep things festive and $6 drinks before 4pm ensure you'll feel plenty loose by sundown.
Costumes are encouraged at this Bourbon Street–inspired rager dubbed Brass, Sass & Ass. The fete involves a colorful parade, a live brass band, death-defying circus performers and plenty of carnival bedazzlement. We dare you to see how many beads you can collect (or earn) before night's end.
After two years off, the Lower East Side Girls Club revives its annual Mardi Gras soiree. Don green, gold, purple or black cocktail attire, purchase a mask made by a Girls Club member for $10 and hit the dance floor to the sounds of DJ Steve Tek. The evening also features a live NOLA-style brass marching band, swing dancing, a performance from Princess Shaw, raffle prizes and that warm fuzzy feeling you get from supporting a good cause.