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Southern Decadence 2011

Southern Decadence , New Orleans 2007

The 2007 Southern Decadence parade

Southern Decadence, also known as Gay Mardi Gras, takes place annually over Labor Day Weekend. This year, the event runs from Wednesday, August 31 through Monday, September 5, 2011. Openings are still available at New Orleans Bed and Breakfasts.

New Orleans is known for its tolerance. From it’s inception, it has been a haven for folks of all backgrounds, cultures, and colors. Though tension has arisen over the years, in general the city has dealt with differences by celebrating them. Parades and festivals are inclusive, rather than exclusive, and it’s hard to frown when you’re dancing.

The first Southern Decadence celebration took place in 1972. It was a going away party and a way to take minds off the heat. Everyone in attendance was encouraged to dress as their favorite “decadent Southern” character, and some 40 – 50 people did so. The party was held again the following year, when everyone met at Matassa’s bar (so costumes could be admired), and then “paraded” through the French Quarter and along Esplanade Avenue. And so another great New Orleans tradition was born.

Southern Decadence is now a world-famous gay celebration. All are welcome, and well over 100,000 people are expected to attend this year. Southern Decadence 2011 promises to be “as outrageous as ever and live up to its reputation as New Orleans’ largest gay street fair”

Most of the Southern Decadence 2011 Highlights take place on the streets of the French Quarter. They’re free and fun, and culminate with the grand parade on Sunday. Indoor events take place at The Bourbon Pub and The Parade, where there will be DJs from all over the country, award-winning video programming, and nightly circuit party dance events. Weekend passes are available. Additional festival information is available at Southern Decadence.

Follow the New Orleans Bed and Breakfasts link for a list of our member inns that are LGBT friendly.

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