Hello everyone! I’m in Lake Charles, Louisiana with a group of journalists experiencing Mardi Gras We just finished touring a historical neighborhood, what you saw in a previous vlog and now we’re going back to our departure point for a few fun activities This particular building is the third of three schools that have been on this piece of property for well over 150 years And when the school was deemed to be unusable by the School Board, the School District,
the citizens of Lake Charles actually voted themselves a quarter cent sales tax, to run temporarily, to buy the school and update it and use it as a Humanities Centre which has been used now for about 25 years Here they have the Mardi Gras Museum, but first
let’s go in for some dance lessons We’re gonna learn the zydeco,
a traditional dance here in Louisiana Hi! Nice to meet you! I’m Renata _ Pleased to meet you!
_ Nice to meet you! So, you’re like a celebrity dancer here Yeah, a little bit, a little bit So tell me a little bit about your family, your background Zydeco music is very traditional in our family. My great cousin played the music. My great cousin, I mean, my great uncle played the music, my grandfather, and it just trickled down to even my son, as we speak, who is 17 years old He’s getting into the industry and we just love zydeco music It keeps our family together because it’s a family traditional event that we do We cook at home, we go outside We dance on the patio That’s amazing! And it’s so fun! Yes, yes, yes! “Five, six, seven, eight”
“Side, in, back and up” “Let’s go! Side, in, back and up” I tell a lot of people to basically just listen to the music because how you’re gonna hear it it’s gonna be the same way I’m hearing it. But, the feel of it… You know? I tell some people “just feel the music” and I had some people when I teach dance respond “I’m sorry… Feel it? Sorry!” But, it eventually works itself out. It’s really, really easy She’s already a natural I teach the four basic ingredients of cooking a gumbo:
water, season, meat and roux So I’m gonna give you guys a little gumbo And what you’re going to see us doing is going to be a little different than what I’m gonna teach you But imagine the four steps that I’m going to teach. You add those little things you saw us doing there It’s gonna fit. It’s gonna fit! It’s gonna cook. It’s gonna boil! “One, two, three…
To the left right now” “One, two, three…
Let’s go” “One, two, three, four
One, up, one, down” “Shake, shake, shake, shake, shake
Now roll it” “One, two, three…
To the right” Give yourselves a hand! So fun, huh? I think I was born to dance Thank you very much for showing us. Thanks, bye! Now the museum next door So now let’s see how different these costumes are compared to the ones we have in Brazil For those of you who don’t know, I’m from Brazil So this is the largest museum of costumes in the world? Yes, ma’am. We have the largest display, that we know of, of Mardi Gras costumes in the world New Orleans does have about three or four museums, but they may have 10 or 50 costumes at a time Ok. And they rotate? Yes, ma’am. We try to keep ours out year-round About 300 costumes on display It’s kinda tricky! How do I get this out? I don’t know! _ “Ah, right here. Ok!”
_ “There you go” Do you have a favorite here? In here? In the museum? There’s so many to
choose from, it’s hard to tell Every time I pick up one that’s my favorite,
I find another one I can imagine! So, difference number one: they cover
way more than the costumes in Brazil Difference number two I’d say is how they wear.
These costumes here they rarely wear on the streets You know? It’s normally during the galas. There’s one tonight, and we’re gonna see some of this in real life _ “Thanks for having us here!”
_ “Sure”! As it’s Mardi Gras, we have one more thing to do here at the Central School. Let’s learn about the king cake I’m gonna prepare my own king cake here.
A tradition here in Louisiana You’ll try to find, to see if you have you know, your little baby in there because that’s supposed to mean, good fortune, good luck, but when we were in school, we would get the king cakes and whoever found the baby that means that you would have to bring the next King cake, next week to class So, our moms were not excited… Ready for MasterChef now? So, this, I’m bringing on the road So much of Louisiana’s culture in one single spot,
you know? Nice! What now? Time to eat We’re eating lunch at a restaurant called 1910. This, by the way, was the year that changed Lake Charles There was a massive fire here One third of the city was destroyed Dessert now. There’s this place here called
Pops and Rockets. Ice cream! Everything named after 80s songs and bands. Funny! Why the eighties? Why did you choose this theme? Well, It’s the greatest generation ever, but, but really It’s just because my partner and I when we started we were so into 80s music I agree! The best generation ever! That’s right. Generation X! My all-time favorite is the pineapple ginger It’s like fresh ginger juice with pineapple and then we put like a single raspberry in the middle and its called “Blister in the Sun” That’s a really good one, as well So you all let me know which you want to try For me, I know: “Wake me up before you coco” _ “Here you go”
_ “Thank you” Chocolate with marshmallow Thank you very much! Thank you for coming in. A pleasure meeting you! So here’s some green, gold…
Ready for the Royal Gala tonight Thank you! We got more! We got plenty! We’re gonna see the royalty of Mardi Gras. People from more than 60 krewes. Everybody wearing their costumes You’ll see them all come out in the promenade And some great music and a lot of fun and Like I said, it’s just kind of “the” moment.
Our Cinderella moment for the season And then it kind of leads into the big
Fat Tuesday events tomorrow This is behind-the-scenes, everybody getting ready What is this? It’s glitter spray Ah, okay Sometimes if the weather is not iffy they’ll wear the royalty costumes on the floats, but if the weather is looking like it might rain they might not just because there’s thousands and thousands of dollars of just
materials tied up into the costumes _ “Ready for the big night?”
_ “I am ready! Cool! _ “Super Mario!”
_ “Super Mario, that’s right!” _ “You are the strong man!”
_ “Yes!” So how did you choose? It was… Our theme this year was carnival and curiosities So all of our costumes go along
with a carnival type theme Well, good evening, everybody! And happy Mardi Gras! Are you ready to party? Each one of these krewes has a theme Krewe=organization that puts on a parade or ball
for the carnival season There’s a couple here representing Brazil! Brazilian Carnival “For the second year in a roll…” Congratulations! That was so fun to see people’s excitement and how they really cheer for the krewes, you know? The community gets really involved and it’s so nice to see. I’m loving Carnival! I’m loving Mardi Gras in Lake Charles! Tomorrow there’s more. Parade day! Most of our parades are public parades that
anybody can take a part of it And that’s one of the best things
about Mardi Gras in Lake Charles Is that it really is… It caters to everyone The young, the young at heart. It’s affordable. Many of the events are free for families to attend And I think that that’s the big draw for folks too It’s a great partnership between multiple groups that make Mardi Gras in Lake Charles happen We’re really excited to have you here! It’s a way for us to really define for this younger generation of what 80’s culture is, because, really, if we don’t Urban Outfitters will and they don’t know what they are talking about People love the Gator!