North Bay Area parade heats up Carnival spirit even on a wet, chilly day

D’IBERVILLE, Miss. (WLOX) - Sunday, hundreds of residents in St. Martin and D’Iberville came out to enjoy the North Bay Area Mardi Gras Association Parade.

After two years of waiting because of the pandemic, even a cloudy and wet day was a beautiful time for a celebration.

As much fun as catching beads is, the parade means a lot more to a lot of people, like Melinda Smith.

This parade serves as her family reunion, and it helps that the family property is right on the route.

“We enjoy everybody’s company, seeing the floats go by, eating food, cooking, spending time together, dancing, just enjoying each other as we don’t get to do that every day of the year,” Smith said. “We get to do it around this time.”

Not having their reunion last year was tough.

“It really took a toll on us because we only had to communicate over social media at that time,” Smith said. “So, we decided to gather again once everything opened up and we could get out here and enjoy each other’s company.”

The earlier rain did alter Julie Spears’ plans just a little.

“We normally play corn-hole and barbecue, but this year, the weather did not permit it,” she said.

However, it was no big deal.

“Yeah, we’re still here and having a good time,” she said.

As did everyone else.

The parade, which has been rolling for 34 years, had 65 entries participating.

D’Iberville resident Robin Upton has been coming to the North Bay parade since she was a child. Now, her children get to experience what she did.

“They always make it kid-friendly,” she said. “They always look out for the kids. Even when I was a kid, they always looked out for us. Now that I have kids myself, they always look out for them.”

Smith had a suggestion for the first-timers.

“I think that if you are only visiting here this year and catch it, you need to come back every year afterward,” she said. “It’s great.”

King LeMoyne was Marvin Potts and Queen LaMarin was Marci Potts.

As a thank you to the medical community, parade organizers invited Dr. Paul Pavlov and his nurse Twy Kirkland to be Grand Marshals.

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Mike Lacy

Mike Lacy

Mike Lacy was a print journalist for 37 years before joining the WLOX team. Most of his career he spent as a writer, editor and page designer at the Sun Herald newspaper.