NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - The Knights of Sparta starts on Saturday, Jan. 30 at 6 p.m.. in Uptown New Orleans.
It follows the traditional Uptown parade route, starting at the intersection of Jefferson Ave. and Magazine St. From there, the parade rolls to Napoleon Ave. and makes a left.
Once it reaches St. Charles Ave., the parade makes a right and heads all the way past Lee Circle to Canal St.
The krewe makes a U-turn at Burgundy St., heads back down Canal St., and then makes a right on Tchoupitoulas St., ending at Poydras St.
The Knights of Sparta originated as a bal masque organization in 1951, staging elaborate tableaus for many years at the Municipal Auditorium. In 1981, the Knights began parading in Orleans Parish. The first several parades rolled as Mecca/Sparta, after which the parade, as well as the bal masque, took on the name of The Knights of Sparta.
The Knights are still known for their elaborate bal masque tableaus, now staged at the Pontchartrain Center in Kenner, and for their traditional, yet innovative, street parade on the first Saturday on the Carnival parade season.
A spectacular signature float, a mule-drawn king's float, traditional flambeaux, and mounted officers are just a few of the wonderful features of the Knights of Sparta street parade each year.