WILLIAMSPORT — WILLIAMSPORT — It’s time for beads and beer, Cajun cuisine and the music of merriment as the Bayou comes to Billtown for the 17th annual Mardi Grass celebration and a chance to party hardy before the Lenten season starts next Wednesday.
Starting Friday night and running until an explosive fireworks climax on Saturday night, Mardi Grass, held in the city’s downtown district, also comes at a time when many area residents are dealing with cabin fever and need to add a little Cajun spice to their cold and chilly days.
“Mardi Gras offers a small taste of New Orleans’ spirit to us Pennsylvanians in the north,” said Steve Koch of The Bullfrog Brewery in downtown Williamsport. The Bullfrog Brewery will be featuring music both nights of Mardi Gras, specialty drinks will also be featured as well as several authentically spiced creole favorites.
This year’s Mardi Grass will feature a parade through the downtown on Saturday night, Cajun-inspired dishes, a gumbo cook off, lots of great music and drink specials at more than 10 downtown bars. Free trolley shuttle service across the downtown will also be offered to party-goers during the event.
“My friends and I always have a blast at Mardi Gras and we are so looking forward to it this year because the weather has been such a pain,” said Lindsey Wyngate, Lewisburg. “I’m a good Catholic girl so Mardi Gras is my one last hoopla for fun before Lent starts, so my friends and I make the most out of it and have an awesome time, catch some music and lots of drinks.”
A few of the bands that will be making merry include Keith Randall from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday and the ever popular blues band Miz Ida and the All Nightaz 9 p.m. to midnight Saturday at the Fourth Street Grille and Ale House.