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Southern Decadence Festival

Since 1972, a small gathering between friends has grown into one of New Orleans’ premier yearly events, not to mention one of the wildest weeks of partying in the American South: Southern Decadence.

Held annually in the French Quarter over Labor Day weekend, this celebration of LGBT culture has attracted as many as 130,000 participants from all over the world! This year’s dates for Southern Decadence are August 28 – September 2, 2013.

Big crowds on Bourbon Street during Southern Decadence.

Big crowds on Bourbon Street during Southern Decadence.

Nicknamed the “Gay Mardi Gras,” Southern Decadence is a quintessential New Orleans occurrence: participants proudly strut in their elaborate costumes and the more over the top the costume, the more admiration you receive!

The action revolves around the intersection of Bourbon and St. Ann streets in the French Quarter. There is always plenty of lively entertainment here and a number of LGBT bars and clubs in the immediate vicinity provide nonstop music, dancing and prancing throughout the event. Along with stage shows in the individual clubs, some street blocks will be closed-off for outdoor concerts.

One of the highlights of  Southern Decadence is the parade through the French Quarter on the Sunday before Labor Day.

Parade Marchers

Parade Marchers

This year’s parade will start at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, September 1. The route starts near the Old U.S. Mint and the French Market and end at Bourbon and Dumaine streets.

In keeping with tradition, Southern Decadence donates a large portion of its proceeds to a local charity. Past year’s charities included the N/O AIDS Task Force.

Gay Friendly Lodging in New Orleans

Would you like to attend Southern Decadence? Even if you can’t attend a festival, you might be thinking about visiting New Orleans. Perhaps you are concerned about picking somewhere to stay where the innkeeper won’t raise their eyebrows when you check in. We have a large selection of gay friendly bed and breakfasts throughout New Orleans that will make you feel welcome and at home.

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