Keep your head amid the celebrations

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Who out there is looking forward to braving the droves of people that will be here for both Mardi Gras holidays and Super Bowl revelry? It’s kind of a big deal.
Millions of people from all over are going to be packed tight into the bowl that is New Orleans, and some of these visitors may not always be on their best behavior. Regardless of the behavior of a select few, crowds can bring trouble. Avoid the unnecessary by planning ahead. Those who plan to partake in the festivities should take a little time out from applying face paint and glitter to prepare safety measures for themselves and the groups they plan to roll with. The more people that get home in one piece the better!
Make sure if you do venture to New Orleans over the next couple of weeks that you lock your cars, close your windows and remove or hide any valuables. Refrain from engaging in any criminal activity or associating with people who may drag you into a bad situation.
Alcohol will be everywhere through Fat Tuesday, so if you choose to imbibe, do so responsibly. This is necessary in order to avoid messy incidents or embarrassing pictures. Also, if you intend to have a few drinks, be sure to arrange a ride with a designated driver or stick the number to a taxi service in your wallet or phone ahead of time. There are sure to be plenty of services available.
Lastly, be gracious host to the area’s many out-of-town visitors. Treating others as you would like to be treated goes a long way in preventing fights and other incidents. And extend this courtesy to the people of the service industry who will be serving you drinks and food. They work hard and deserve a little something extra for working while so many are celebrating. If we all make it a point to be kind, our visitors will have a blast. If they enjoy themselves, they will go back to their homes heralding our southern charm and make plans to come back and drop more money into our industries.
And that will only make the celebration grow bigger and better.