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LGBTQ Mardi Gras Festival New Orleans

Mardi Gras and the city of New Orleans are LGBTQ friendly. In fact, the Krewe of Yuga founded during the 1950s was the first openly gay group. Some people in the LGBTQ community feel this group helped with igniting The Gay Rights Movement in the US. During the Mardi Gras celebrations, there are many gay carnival balls hosted by different Krewes. When attending these parties expect to see performers in lavish costumes, dancers, food, and drinks. Most of the parties will continue long into the night. If you’re searching for some exciting nightlife look no further than the Mardi Gras carnival balls. Keep in mind, some of the parties may require tickets for entry. Here is a list of gay Krewes that host carnival balls during Mardi Gras.


Armeinius holds a ball to help keep the history of LGBTQ involvement in Mardi Gras alive. If you want to learn more about the gay community in New Orleans while having a good time, this is a good carnival ball to check out.


If you want to see some extravagant costumes check out Amon-Ra’s carnival ball. The ancient Egyptian themed gay Krewe was started in the 1960s and has built a reputation for hosting awesome parties.


Another one of the original gay Krewes, this group helped encourage other openly gay Krewes to form. Petronius throws a fun party with lots of drinking, eating, and dancing.

Lords Of Leather

This krewe hosts a leather themed carnival ball each year. However, this ball takes part in the medieval traditions of carnival. Everyone dresses in leather and masks with a medieval twist.

Krewe Of Stars

This Krewe was recently founded in 2017. The Krewe of Stars seek to promote theater arts throughout the community. They put on some great performances during Mardi Gras. Definitely worth stopping by!

Other LGBTQ Events

Carnival balls aren’t the only LGBTQ focused events happening during Mardi Gras. There is a huge costume contest (with cash prizes) held right in the French Quarter and a friendly luncheon at Arnaud’s restaurant with various contests and prizes.

Carnival balls are an exciting part of the Mardi Gras traditions. However, there is so much to see and do while in New Orleans. When creating your itinerary, write down the top Mardi Gras events that you want to attend. Remember to be flexible as your itinerary may need to change last minute because of the busy season. Get planning, you won’t regret a trip to Mardi Gras!

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