Mardi Gras! Galveston, commemorates 103 years on the island from February 21 to March 4. Situated on a 32-mile-long island, it is the nation’s third largest Mardi Gras celebration, with elaborate parades, headliner performances, family events, Gulf Coast cuisine, an ocean view and island-style festivities that include parade viewers shouting for beads, lively tunes played by colorful marching bands, 23 parades, 26 concerts, 20 balcony parties, laser light shows and elegant masked balls. New this year is the inaugural Official Umbrella Decorating Contest, with original decorated umbrellas voted on by the public.
The Jolly Jester Jaunt 5K Run for Fun will be held at 11 a.m., February 22. Participants gallop through the historical Strand district with an optional stick pony. The first 500 gallopers will be awarded jester hats and jester-themed run shirts to celebrate the event in fashion.
On February 23, Mardi Gras! transforms into Family Gras! for a day of kid-friendly events. Gates open at 11 a.m., featuring two parades, live entertainment and free admission for the public. Donations will be taken at the gate to benefit the Sunshine Kids and Shriners Hospitals for Children.
For more information and a complete schedule of events, visit MardiGrasGalveston.com.