“Save the Children” brings Mardi Gras to St. James

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 20, 2004

By MARIE ORY Staff Reporter

More than seven years ago St. James Parish was lacking when it came to carnival spirit, but through the efforts of LaVerne and Aaron Gordon and their non-profit organization Save the Children a little bit of that Mardi Gras spirit will come back February 24 when Krewe Save De Children rolls.

LaVerne Gordon invites neighboring communities to participate in this fundraiser. For a fee of $75 floats are allowed a spot in the line-up, and for $45 a truck or car can ride as well.

“At Easter, I have an Easter egg hunt that is free for the children,” LaVerne Gordon said. “The boy and girl winner, if their parents allow, are the king and queen for the Mardi Gras parade.”

The theme for this year’s parade is “Contribution to American Life,” and LaVerne Gordon encourages those who participate to use the theme when coming up with float, car or truck decorations.

“This can be music or anything historical. It is really meant to make you think about something that has happened that contributed to American life,” she said. “To make it more interesting, I have judges to choose those floats that reflect the theme, and I offer trophies for first, second and third place.”

LaVerne Gordon said the goal is to enhance the community through the free Easter egg hunt and Mardi Gras parade. “This is something that the kids look forward to,” she said.

The parade runs from Lutcher Elementary down Main Street of Lutcher and Gramercy and then back to the elementary school.

LaVerne Gordon said the parade is looking for a band to volunteer their time for the parade. All proceeds from the parade go directly back into the community.

“I will purchase toys for Christmas and give them to my church for needy families,” she said. “I also use the money from the parade to put on the Easter festivities on Easter Sunday complete with candy, toys, an egg hunt and an appearance by the Easter Bunny for pictures.”

LaVerne Gordon also said she will often purchase arts and crafts and bring them to local schools for the principals to distribute to those grades they feel need the projects.

“I just love doing this,” she said. “This really brings the community together.”

For those interested in participating in Krewe Save De Children, please contact Aaron or LaVerne Gordon at 225-869-8696. Entry forms are available and the deadline for entering is February 6.