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Mardi Gras parties its way into SeaWorld San Diego

by Susan and Simon Veness

Mardi Gras parades, food, and family-friendly fun come to SeaWorld San Diego for the first time ever, starting February 5.

Mardi Gras SeaWorld
Photos courtesy of SeaWorld

Each Saturday and Sunday from Feb. 5 – Feb. 27 (plus Feb. 18 and Feb. 21), all the festive flair of New Orleans’ Mardi Gras will take over the park, bringing with it an all-new menu of Creole and Cajun cuisine, live music, kids’ games, and the colorful costumery worthy of a genuine N’awlins celebration.

It wouldn’t be Mardi Gras without a flashy parade and “Bourbon Street,” and SeaWorld San Diego will have those, too. Guests can even participate in the parade, walking alongside its peppy performers.

The parade will run twice each day, as guests take to the street and dance to live-band jazzy beats while jugglers and jesters entertain. Will there be beads? Of course there will be beads!

Mardi Gras beads

SkyTower stage, all decked out in its Fat Tuesday finery, is the place to be for more live music by the Good Time Jazz Band, belting out French Quarter beats.

DJs set a carnival atmosphere with Dixieland and Jazz tunes at evening dance parties, and the San Diego Marine Corp Marching Band will put on special performances on select dates.

Characters dressed in classic purple, green, and gold costumes will be on hand at SkyTower lawn to greet guests and pose for photos, and the snazzy festival area will also feature a face painting booth, fairground-style games, and kid-friendly activities.

Every good Big Easy event deserves great food, and SeaWorld San Diego’s culinary team has assembled all-new menus boasting Creole and Cajun favorites such as savory andouille sausage, shrimp jambalaya, hefty lobster or roast beef po-boy sandwiches, and dirty rice with a twist (Impossible meat and lentils).

No good New Orleans celebration would be without an iconic King Cake (this time as a Roulade) and soft-as-a-cloud beignets, the sweet treat that helped make the town famous.

Mardi Gras beignets

Festival cocktails keep the party going (for ages 21 and up), with libations including Hurricanes, Blackberry Juleps, and frozen Margaritas.

Jim Lake, SeaWorld San Diego park president, said, “We’re thrilled to bring this exciting new event offering to San Diego. SeaWorld’s Mardi Gras will give guests a taste of New Orleans’ iconic carnival celebration and fully immerse them in all the colors, flavors, sounds, and fun of Mardi Gras, with activities suitable for visitors of all ages. Laissez le bon temps rouler!”

SeaWorld San Diego’s spectacular Mardi Gras celebration is included with park admission.

As SeaWorld parks prepare for annual events and big ride openings this year, the southern California park has revived its popular SoCal Pass for just $10 per month, allowing unlimited admission and free parking for 12 months, plus a Mardi Gras light-up necklace. The special price is available for a limited time.

For more information visit SeaWorldSanDiego.com.

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