Krewe of Alla moving to Uptown route

Published: Jun. 3, 2013 at 2:33 AM CDT|Updated: Jun. 29, 2016 at 8:56 PM CDT
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Gretna -- Expect big changes on the West Bank for next year's carnival season. FOX 8 has exclusively learned that the Krewe of Alla will now roll Uptown, in an effort to attract more riders. Some West Bank residents say the move is heartbreaking.

For 80 years, the Krewe of Alla has been a fixture on the West Bank parade route. Residents in Algiers, Gretna and Terrytown watched as the krewe evolved and grew over the years. But now, membership is dwindling. So much so, that the board of directors put out a public notice...they needed 200 additional members to sign up by June 1st. Alla secretary Frank Borne explains, "Unfortunately we didn't come anywhere near that so the board has decided that we are going to go Uptown and hopefully by changing our route, we will be able to attract a lot of members who are interested in riding, being part of the New Orleans carnival experience."

Borne says the krewe hopes to capitalize on the momentum that a lot of other big name crews that ride along St. Charles Avenue experience each year. But Alla's decision isn't being taken lightly by West Bank residents, especially considering last year, Cleopatra announced it was moving Uptown and Choctaw next year will permanently move Uptown as well.

Reacting to the news of Alla's departure, West Bank resident Nicole Todd replied, "Say what? That's just rude, that's wrong. That's wrong because we need our West Bank krewes." Chad Walser added, "It makes you sad because it's been here forever and…Alla is the big one we have on the West Bank so definitely upsetting."

Borne says the board of directors tried everything they could think of to stay on the West Bank but the finances couldn't be fixed. "We appreciate the support we've had all these years but unfortunately, without riders, it's not much of a parade," said Borne.

Now, Alla will roll on Sunday, February 23rd from Magazine and Jefferson, up to St. Charles and then on to Canal. But some of Alla's biggest fans say they won't make the trip to the East Bank. "I work over there and I don't want to go over there, all the tourists. It's my Mardi Gras not theirs," said Todd.

"We don't venture much to the East Bank parades anymore, sorry, we just don't do it. Too much going on," said Walser.

Frank Borne says, while difficult, this change is order for the Krewe of Alla, to stay intact.

The Krewe of Alla is holding a membership meeting this Thursday night at the English Turn Country Club. They're encouraging anyone who may want to join and ride along the Uptown route, to show up at the meeting, at 7 p.m.