Mardi Gras in Mobile Alabama Colors

We took a tour at the Carnival’s Museum on Government Street in Mobile while we were visiting in February. We had the fortunate good luck to have Craig Roberts as our tour guide and learned much about Mardi Gras. We highly recommend the tour and Craig as the tour guide and his book is most insightful to Mardi Gras in Mobile, Alabama.

Among many facts and tidbits about Mardi Gras that stuck in our mind, the one fact that has stood out the most is the “colors of Mardi Gras”.

Mobile’s Mardi Gras colors are purple and gold unlike the other carnivals whose colors are purple, green and gold.


King Cake Recipe

The King Cake is a braided cake much tasting like a coffee cake and it’s decorated with icing and sugar with the colors of Mardi Gras. Purple for the Justice of God, Gold for God’s power and Green for Faith in Christ. And there’s always a small plastic baby placed in the cake. The person that receives the piece of cake with baby doll is responsible for providing the cake for the next year’s celebration.

I have yet to create a King Cake but after scouring the web, found this gem of a recipe from a favorite recipe website:

1 cup milk
1/4 cup butter
2 (.25 ounce) packages active dry yeast
2/3 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
1/2 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
5 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
2/3 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup melted butter

1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 tablespoon water

Scald milk, remove from heat and stir in 1/4 cup of butter. Allow mixture to cool to room temperature. In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in the warm water with 1 tablespoon of the white sugar. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.

When yeast mixture is bubbling, add the cooled milk mixture. Whisk in the eggs. Stir in the remaining white sugar, salt and nutmeg. Beat the flour into the milk/egg mixture 1 cup at a time. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 to 10 minutes.

Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth or plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 2 hours. When risen, punch down and divide dough in half.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease 2 cookie sheets or line with parchment paper.

To Make Filling: Combine the brown sugar, ground cinnamon, chopped pecans, 1/2 cup flour and 1/2 cup raisins. Pour 1/2 cup melted butter over the cinnamon mixture and mix until crumbly.

Roll dough halves out into large rectangles (approximately 10×16 inches or so). Sprinkle the filling evenly over the dough and roll up each half tightly like a jelly roll, beginning at the wide side. Bring the ends of each roll together to form 2 oval shaped rings. Place each ring on a prepared cookie sheet. With scissors make cuts 1/3 of the way through the rings at 1 inch intervals. Let rise in a warm spot until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.

Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes. Push the doll into the bottom of the cake. Frost while warm with the confectioners’ sugar blended with 1 to 2 tablespoons of water.

You can find the original recipe here:

2018 Mardi Gras Parades in Mobile, Alabama

Keep checking back as this list will grow.

Friday, February 9th
@6:30 Crewe of Columbus

Saturday, February 10th

@12:00 Floral Parade
@12:30 Knights of Mobile
@1:00 Mobile Mystical Ladies
@1:30 Order of Angels
@6:00 Mystics of Time

Sunday, February 11th

@2:00 King Elexis Motorcade (Route E)
@2:30 Joe Cain Procession
@5:00 Le Krewe de Beinville

Monday, February 12th LUNDI GRAS

@12:00 King Felix III
@12:30 Floral Parade
@3:00 MLK Business and Civic Organizations (Route D)
@3:30 MLK Mystics (Route D)
@4:00 Northside Merchants (Route D)
@7:00 Infant Mystics (Route F)
@7:30 Order of Doves (Route F)

Tuesday, February 13t FAT TUESDAY

@10:30 Order of Athena
@12:30 Knights of Revelry
@1:00 King Felix III
@1:30 Comic Cowboys
@2:00 MAMGA Mammoth (Route B)
@6:00 Order of Myths (Route C)

Mardi Gras dates through 2025

2018 Tuesday, February 13
2019 Tuesday, March 5
2020 Tuesday, February 25
2021 Tuesday, February 16
2022 Tuesday, March 1
2023 Tuesday, February 21
2024 Tuesday, February 13
2025 Tuesday, March 4

Mardi Gras in Mobile

Mardi Gras in Mobile is the annual Carnival celebration in Mobile, Alabama. It is the oldest annual Carnival celebration in the United States, started by Frenchman Nicholas Langlois in 1703. This was fifteen years before New Orlean was founded, although today their celebrations are much more widely known. From Mobile being the first capital of French Louisiana (1702), the festival began as a French Catholic tradition. Mardi Gras in Mobile has now evolved into a mainstream multi-week celebration across the spectrum of cultures in Mobile, becoming school holidays for the final Monday and Tuesday (some include Wednesday),regardless of religious affiliation.

Although Mobile has traditions of exclusive societies, with formal masked balls and elegant costumes, the celebration has evolved over the past three centuries to become typified by public parades where members of societies, often masked, on floats or horseback, toss gifts (known as throws) to the general public. Throws include necklaces of plastic beads, doubloon coins, decorated plastic cups, candy, wrapped cakes known as Moonpies or snacks, stuffed animals, and small toys, footballs, frisbees, or whistles.

The masked balls or dances, where non-masked men wear white tie and tails (full dress or costume de rigueur) and the women wear full length evening gowns, are oriented to adults, with some mystic societies treating the balls as an extension of the debutante season of their exclusive social circles. Various nightclubs and local bars offer their own particular events.

Beyond the public parades, Mardi Gras in Mobile involves many various mystic societies, some having begun in 1704, or ending with the Civil War, while new societies were formed every century. Some mystic societies are never seen in public parades, but rather hold invitation-only events for their secret members, with private balls beginning in November, each year.