A small town girl making the big city home. She loves everything DC, and is slowly introducing her one-year-old to the world of Smithsonians, monuments, cherry blossoms and the DMV. A perfect day in town would include breakfast at Eastern Market (or Founding Farmers), checking out the National Gallery of Art, a burger and/or shake at Good Stuff or sandwich from Taylor Made, the two mile walk around the monuments, and cupcakes from Sprinkles (or Georgetown Cupcake if the line isn't forever long) to go.

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2014 DC Mardi Gras: Laissez les bons temps rouler

DC Mama - 2014 DC Mardi Gras

DC Mardi Gras festivities are going on throughout the area, leading up to Ash Wednesday on March 5. Whether you want to party with your kids or have a night on the town, mark your calendar now!

With as much winter as we’ve been having around here, I am ready for some spring. Starting with Mardi Gras.

In the words of Mardi Gras-goers, “Laissez les bons temps rouler” — Let the good times roll!

There are so many great ways to celebrate the end of winter, the end of gluttony, the culmination of carnival season.

You can let the good times roll in DC (without having to bare it for beads), with activities for one and all.

Here’s a look at DC Mardi Gras activities going on in the area before Ash Wednesday (the start of the Lent).

2014 DC Mardi Gras with Kids

  • Clarendon Mardi Gras Parade, March 4, 8 p.m. The largest DC Mardi Gras event, includes local community group, Mardi Gras beads and masks. The parade is organized by the Clarendon Alliance and runs along Wilson Boulevard from North Barton Street to North Irving Street.
  • Village at Leesburg Mardi Gras Party, March 1, 3-5 p.m. Enjoy pre-Fat Tuesday festivities, jazz, strolling entertainment, face painting, glitter tattoos, prizes and more. 602 Village Market Blvd. SE, Leesburg, VA 20175
  • Cajun/Zydeco Dance at Glen Echo Park, March 4, 7:30 – 11 p.m. Mardi Gras costumes welcome but not necessary. Beginners are most welcome, and no partner is necessary. Beginner Zydeco dance lesson from 7:30 – 8 p.m. Dancing from 8 – 11 p.m. 7300 MacArthur Boulevard, Glen Echo, MD 20812

2014 DC Mardi Gras sans Kids

  • Mardi Gras Masquerade, February 27, 8 – 11 p.m. 21+ party featuring Jazz music, a cash bar, festive costumes, beads and of course, masks are encouraged (a complimentary simple mask will be provided if you don’t come with one. L2 Lounge 3315 Cady’s Alley NW, Washington, DC 20001
  • Mardi Gras Odyssey Cruise, March 4, boarding at 6 p.m. The cruise will feature a special Mardi Gras Dinner menu with cajun-inspired dishes, live band entertainment, fun décor and complimentary Mardi Gras beads and masks. More information and tickets available online at Odyssey Cruises.
  • Bayou Gras Black Party, March 4, 5 – 10 p.m. Continue the party in Clarendon, before, during and after the parade. Parade Food, Bourbon Street Style Drinks, and Abita Amber Beer from 5 taps. Tickets for the event are available for order online through Bayou Bakery, along with ordering information for a King Cake if you don’t think you’ll be up to dealing with the DC festivities.

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