WORDEN, IL – Want to celebrate Mardi Gras but avoid the hassle of driving, prices, and the lack of toilets at Mardi Gras in St. Louis? Then join the town of Worden for the 5th Annual Wordi Gras Parade, slated to roll down Wall Street on March 5, 2011. Not too shabby for an event that started as a day of goofing off. This year, organizers are anticipating an even bigger turnout and are actively seeking parade participants. In 2010, Wordi Gras promoters welcomed more than 20 participants and want to exceed that number for this year.
A take-off of popular Mardi Gras celebrations and sponsored by Leo & Jan’s Idle Hour Bar, the event was first conceived by a group of five residents who found themselves stranded in the small town when they could not afford to make the trip to St. Louis’ Soulard neighborhood in 2007. With a red pick-up truck and some extra Mardi Gras beads and accessories from past years, the group made their own “parade”, and thus the tradition was born. Members of the group did the same thing in 2008, this time with a few more people and another truck. For 2009 and 2010, however, the parade ballooned into a large undertaking, including local law enforcement, first responders, local youth sports teams and the American Legion, as well as floats created by private businesses and individuals in Worden.
As in years past, the parade route will run on Wall Street from Park Street to Shirley Street and begins at 3:00 pm. After the parade, Wordi Gras festivities will be held at the Idle Hour, 115 E Wall St., where food and drinks will be available for purchase. The bar will also have beads, masks and hats available for purchase throughout the day. People of all ages are encouraged to come out for the parade. Those seeking more information or wishing to enter a float in the parade may contact A.J. Harshbarger at 618-910-7492 or Walker Gusewelle at 618-444-9296.