Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 13, 2010



GRAMERCY – About the same time Mardi Gras festivities are reaching peak excitement in the New Orleans area, residents of St. James Parish will be hitting the streets for the lone parade of their Carnival season.

The family-friendly, community-oriented Krewe of Tomorrow rolls through the streets of Gramercy and Lutcher starting at 1 p.m. Fat Tuesday.

“Our theme this year is Mardi Gras Fiesta,” said parade organizer Roxie Batiste. “But we will also be partying with the ‘Who Dats’ since many of the floats will have a distinct Saints theme.”

Batiste said the parade, which is in its fourth year, features 12 separate carnival organizations, whose members ride atop nine floats. She said the procession also includes a motorcycle group, various marching dance groups and a collection of antique cars.

The krewe’s festivities officially kick off tonight at 9:30 p.m., with a carnival ball at the Gramercy Boat Club. Batiste said the ball, which has an attendance consisting of members from the organizations in the parade, typically attracts more than 500 people.

“We roll up and have a real good time,” Batiste said. “We are expecting a brass band and a group of Mardi Gras Indians for extra entertainment.”

Batiste said the Krewe of Tomorrow shares royalty with the Krewe of Agape, which features members from across the River Parishes. This year’s king and queen are Osborne and Kathy Megga Kelson of Paulina. The royalty also includes a junior king and queen, Kameron Clayton and Zahara Thomas, and two princesses, Javonie and Jalisa Hansley.

The parade lines up on North King Avenue, takes a turn onto Fifth Street, and travels to Lionel Washington Street. From Lionel Washington the parade turns left onto Main Street, travels into Gramercy, makes a U-turn at North David Drive and follows the route back to the start.