Image 1 of 1
NEW ORLEANS, AL - MARCH 8: Large crowds reach up for beads as the Jester float in the traditional Rex parade rolls down Canal Street on  Mardi Gras March 8, 2011 in News Orleans, Louisiana.  Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday is the final day of Carnival, and the day before Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent. It's been celebrated in Louisiana since the late 17th century when it was under French colonial rule. (Photo by Cheryl Gerber/Getty Images)