Mardi Gras: a guide to five of the biggest New Orleans parades

Parades known as krewes form the backbones of the Mardi Gras season in New Orleans. Here are five of the biggest ones. 

2. Krewe of Endymion

The largest and most extravagant of the super krewes, the Krewe of Endymion was founded in 1966. Its motto, “Throw until it hurts,” epitomizes the tradition of krewes blanketing onlookers with bead strings and doubloons.

Though viewers often stake out spots 12 hours before the parade starts, the Krewe of Endymion is arguably most famous for its post-parade party, the Endymion Extravaganza, which this year will feature 14,000 guests at the Superdome.

Among past grand marshals are Doc Severinsen, Dolly Parton, Britney Spears, and Kid Rock. This year, CNN's Anderson Cooper will return as grand marshal, sharing the stage with the pop band Maroon 5. The Krewe of Endymion kicks off its traditional Mid-City route at 4:15 p.m. on Saturday, weather permitting.

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