Carnival season culminates Tuesday with the pageantry of the Rex and Zulu parades and as many as 1 million people reveling in the streets.
The parade routes were packed with revelers by early Sunday, despite the threat of rain and a shooting on Bourbon Street the night before. Some had set up tents, folding chairs, even barbecue pits. Ladders were set up with seats at the top for kids to get a good view of the revelry.
"The show must go on," said William Daviss, donning a black and white striped costume and yellow face mask as he boarded a float in the Krewe of Thoth parade, one of several that rolled Sunday.
"This is what Mardi Gras is all about right here," said Patrick Browne of New Orleans, hugging his 1-year-old son Patrick Browne IV. The younger Patrick had a birds-eye view of the parade from the top of a ladder, which his dad had equipped with a small seat and handle bar.
The rain appeared to be a minor concern. Most had arrived at the parade route prepared.
"We have ponchos. We have our jackets. We have umbrellas. We have everything. We are set," said Janell Weber of Baton Rouge, La., wearing a hat boasting long purple, green and gold streamers.
The previous night's shooting was on the minds of revelers.
"It was very disappointing," said New Orleans resident Carol Redmann-Bailey as she watched Thoth roll by. "I was disappointed and sad, but it seems like Bourbon Street stayed open. Laissez les bon temps rouler. Let the good times roll."