NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Rex, the King of Carnival, will make his grand entrance to the Lundi Gras festivities at Spanish Plaza a little different this year.
Instead of arriving by a Coast Guard cutter on the Mississippi River, Rex will arrive to greet his subjects aboard an elegantly decorated vintage railroad car.
This won't be the first time the King of Carnival has used rail to arrive. Back in the late 1880s Rex used the trains to greet his subjects. At that time, trains were becoming increasingly important to New Orleans, bringing visitors to the city and strengthening commerce. The city also added train service during Carnival season to help handle the additional tourists who came to town.
Rex traditionally meets with the royalty of the Krewe of Zulu, the Mayor of New Orleans and other city dignitaries at Spanish Plaza. The Lundi Gras tradition dates back to 1987.