Bringing Mardi Gras to CERF

woman covered in beads and feathers celebrates by walking the mardi gras parade band marches in the mardi gras parade playing music

Did you know Mobile, Alabama is the birthplace of Mardi Gras in the US? As the original capital of French Louisiana, Mobile celebrated Mardi Gras 15 years before New Orleans was founded, and 300 years later, the celebration continues! So in honor of our conference city, we are bringing Mardi Gras to CERF!

On Sunday, 3 November, we'll kick off our opening social with a Second Line Procession, a traditional people's parade with a fascinating multicultural history. As tradition holds, our parade will be led by a local brass band, The Mobile Second Line Society, followed by our CERF attendees! We are looking for CERF’s best foot marchers to join us as we parade through the halls of the Mobile Convention Center! 

Do you want to join our CERF Mardi Gras Parade? Here’s what you need to know:

  • We invite CERF’s affiliate societies, exhibitors, academic institutions, student organizations, and other groups to form your own parade unit! 
  • Get creative with options to enhance your parading group 
  • Carry a banner or sign that represents your group
  • Wear masks or costumes to get in the festive spirit. Themed costumes are great!
  • Bring beads, cups, and other throws for spectators
  • Following the parade, we will have receptacles at the opening social event for reusing or recycling any unwanted throws.
Download Our Parade Route

If you want to join the CERF parade, email [email protected] to confirm your participation. Please include the name of your group, a point of contact (including their name and email address), number of participants, and any throws you plan to bring to the parade. Individual paraders (or “foot marchers” as the locals call them) who don’t register ahead of time will still be able to join in the second line when it kicks off!

And don’t worry, if you don’t join the parade, you can line the parade route as a spectator. If you're lucky, you might just catch some throws from our CERF parading units or maybe a moonpie from some of Mobile's own mystical Mardi Gras krewes who will also be joining our parade! So get ready to "let the good times roll" at CERF 2019, or as the locals say, "Laissez les bons temps rouler!"