What do New Orleans and New England have in common? Well... they both start with "New" and have the same number of letters. Oh, and they both have fabulous Mardi Gras celebrations! Granted, New England can't truly hold a candle to New Orleans when it comes to Mardi Gras revelry and debauchery. (This may have something to do with the fact that it's still incredibly cold in New England in February.) That said, if you find yourself up north as Fat Tuesday approaches (February 28 in 2017), there are plenty of places where you can feast on Cajun delights, snag some beads, sip intoxicating beverages and celebrate a memorable Mardi Gras.
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March 10-12, 2017, Burlington, Vermont. Magic Hat Mardi Gras rolls into Burlington, Vermont, for the 22nd year, promising to transform the city's chilly streets into a lively scene for three fun-filled days, starting with Friday's kickoff party with Steady Betty at Higher Ground. Music, costumes, a parade, beads and beer are all integral to this New England-style Mardi Gras celebration, which is geared for all ages. Don't miss the Grand Parade down Main Street on Saturday. Proceeds from the event benefit the Vermont Food Bank.
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February 25, 2017, Faneuil Hall and Surrounding Area, Boston, Massachusetts. From noon to 9 p.m., dress New Orleans spicy and participate in a pub crawl featuring specialty drinks, discounted food specials, prize giveaways and masks and beads for revelers. Buy tickets online in advance for $25, plus a $2.37 handling fee. At least eight bars are participating.
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February 25, 2017, Rhodes on the Pawtuxet, 60 Rhodes Place, Cranston, Rhode Island. Buy tickets in advance or at the door for this annual Mardi Gras Ball, held from 6:30 p.m. until midnight. Featured bands include Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys, Corey Ledet and His Zydeco Band, Roddie Romero and the Hub City All Stars and The Hot Tamale Brass Band.Continue to 5 of 9 below.
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February 25, 2017, New England Carousel Museum, 95 Riverside Avenue, Bristol, Connecticut. It's a merry-go-round of Mardi Gras fun, as the New England Carousel Museum hosts its New Orleans-themed 27th anniversary celebration. Tickets are $50 and include a night of music and dancing with the Al Fenton Band, bourbon and wine tastings in the Speakeasy, dinner, dessert, face painting, beads and doubloons. Masks and costumes are encouraged.
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February 28, 2017, Regattabar at the Charles Hotel, One Bennett Street, Cambridge, Massachusetts. Join Revolutionary Snake Ensemble and special guests Charles Neville and Henri Smith for a Mardi Gras Party to remember this Fat Tuesday. Tickets are $22 for the 7:30 p.m. show.
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February 28, 2017, Buttermilk and Bourbon, 160 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, Massachusetts. Opening on February 27, just in time for Mardi Gras, Jason Santos’ New Orleans-inspired Buttermilk and Bourbon hosts a not-to-miss Mardi Gras celebration on Fat Tuesday from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. The party will feature Creole cuisine, hurricanes on draft, live music, festive décor and plenty of beads to go around. Each Buttermilk and Bourbon dining space is inspired by a New Orleans neighborhood, such as the Garden District, the French Quarter and Bourbon Street.
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February 28, 2017, Black-eyed Sally's BBQ & Blues, 350 Asylum Street, Hartford, Connecticut. If you're looking for a place to party all day on Fat Tuesday, then head for Hartford. Black-eyed Sally's serves up an all-you-can eat southern lunch buffet. There'll be happy hour specials and free vittles. The evening features N'awlins menu specials and the bayou sounds of River City Slim & The Zydeco Hogs. Plus, there'll be beads, stilt walkers, face painters and more. 860-278-7427.Continue to 9 of 9 below.
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February 28, 2017, The Beehive, 541 Tremont Street, Boston, Massachusetts. The Beehive's 10th annual Mardi Gras celebration features live music by Alex Lee Clark and his band, plus hand-crafted,New Orleans-style cocktails and Cajun cuisine. The party gets underway at 5 p.m. on Fat Tuesday and continues until midnight. There is no cover, and Mardi Gras beads are free.