Mardi Gras krewes consider new Metairie route
Next year's Carnival season in Metairie may look a whole lot different from 2012. That's because some krewes want to roll down Metairie Road instead of the traditional Veterans Boulevard route.
Kathryn DuBos likes being able to come and go from her Old Metairie home. Once a year DuBos' neighborhood becomes congested during the St. Patrick's Day parade. It's a day DuBos knows she can't leave home.
But now some Mardi Gras krewes want to roll through Old Metairie for Carnival. It's an idea that doesn't sit well with DuBos.
She explains, "I think it's a very bad idea. It's just perfect the way it is."
Not everyone feels that way.Several krewe captains gathered at the Yenni Building Tuesday night with an advisory committee to discuss ways to improve their parades.
The Krewe of Argus wants to make their parade more family-friendly. They want to roll along Metairie Road, starting at Focis, looping up Bonnabel and ending at Archbishop Rummel High School.
Argus Board Chairman Todd Murphy questions, "Aesthetically would it look better for the riders, could we attract more riders and could we attract the family-friendly audience that we're looking for? And I'll be quite frank with you, at some parts, particularly on Severn, family-friendly is really not the idea that we get."
Other krewes such as Caesar want to stay on Veterans but extend the route to Transcontinental, doing away with the Bonnabel loop. That plan didn't meet with too much opposition. But most residents at Tuesday night's meeting were staunchly opposed to the idea of parades rolling through Old Metairie.
"Having parade after parade after parade on that small street, it's almost ridiculous. And quite honestly, it would be a tremendous inconvenience for all of us that live in a nice family neighborhood," said resident David Haspel.
A representative from Jefferson Parish says there would be many obstacles the parish would face if the route were to change. One of the big concerns is where to put ramps and viewing stands.
Director of Citizen's Affairs Sean Burke says, "Anybody that's driven down Bonnabel knows that's impossible because the trees... and I'm not about to start cutting down trees along Bonnabel."
The proposal isn't dead. The advisory committee will continue to meet to mull over the idea. If it gets more traction, the committee will submit a final proposal to the Jefferson Parish Council by June.