Mardi Gras for Kids: Tips for Celebrating in New Orleans

As one happy group of purple-clad visitors wraps up its triumphant visit to New Orleans, another group is currently descending on The Big Easy in advance of Mardi Gras 2013. These travelers are asking a lot of questions: What's the Mardi Gras parade schedule? (It's right here.) Why does everyone on the floats wear masks? (It's the law.) How many beads do you think I'll be able to amass? (A lot.)

And parents are asking: Is it appropriate to bring the kids?

No doubt. Organizers stress that Mardi Gras is a family celebration. It's said to be a New Orleans tradition for adults to use their kids as an excuse to go watch the parades. But there are guidelines families who travel to Mardi Gras should follow. As Chris Waddington writes at "On Mardi Gras, kids have to behave like grown-ups, because grown-ups behave like children."

For some more practical tips on navigating the parades and the sometimes raucous Mardi Gras crowds in New Orleans next Tuesday, take heed of the advice in the video below.

And if you're not going to New Orleans, but still want to show your kids the celebration, follow along on the paradecam.

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