NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Pop star Kelly Clarkson will ride as celebrity grand marshal when the Krewe of Endymion parade rolls on the Saturday before Mardi Gras in 2013.
Clarkson was the first winner of the Fox reality show "American Idol" in 2002. Her hits include "A Moment Like This" and "Because of You."
The krewe said she also will perform at Endymion's ball at the Superdome after the parade.
Clarkson may be upstaged at the Feb. 9 parade by a float organizers bill as the largest and most elaborate in Carnival history.
The super float will be 250 feet long and carry more than 200 riders. Its design focuses on Pontchartrain Beach, the amusement park that entertained generations on the New Orleans lakefront before closing in 1983.
The float, which is still under construction, will be divided into sections so it can make turns on New Orleans streets.
Clarkson's role and renderings of the float were revealed during a news conference Thursday at Mardi Gras World, the studio operated by the Kern family. Kern builds most of the floats used in Carnival parades in New Orleans.
Parade floats typically range in length to about 50 feet and can carry about 40 riders. But in 1969, the Bacchus krewe introduced larger floats, sparking a new wave of showmanship at Carnival.