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St. Joseph's Day in New Orleans!

September 18, 2017 12:00 PM



This Sunday, March 19, is St. Joseph's Day!! New Orleans has a big population of Sicilian immigrants who celebrate the Catholic holiday by constructing elaborate altars in honor of the saint, participating in parades, and sharing food to express gratitude for any sort of fortune in their lives.

St. Joseph's Altar

"Super Sunday" is also a major day for the Mardi Gras Indians! Their festivities begin at noon in A.L. Davis Park (at Washington & LaSalle Streets) where the Mardi Gras Indians once again dress in their feathers and suits and take to the streets to meet other "gangs." 

"Nobody is completely certain when the tradition of Mardi Gras Indians 'masking' on St. Joseph's night began. However, there have been reports of Indians on St. Joseph's night dating back to before World War I. The custom seems to have come about simply because it was a good opportunity. With all of the Catholic Italians celebrating this holiday in the streets, the Indians were able to blend in and celebrate as well.

Before 1969, the Indians celebrated by coming out at night to meet and greet other "gangs". In 1969, the first parade was created and rolled through town at night. In 1970, it was switched to a day parade on Sunday afternoon, and has continued in that tradition to this day." - - Mardi Gras New Orleans


One Sicilian-New Orleanian is the owner of one of the city's most treasured restaurants! Nick Lama, owner of Avo, is celebrating St. Joseph's day by serving Sicilian treats at his restaurant on Magazine Street, including delicious fig cookies! Check out this piece by The Times-Picayune about Lama and the upcoming festivities! 

Fig cookies