One day we took a ferry from River Walk, across the Mississippi to Algiers to see Mardi Gras World. It was kind of silly. At the beginning they let you dress up in costumes and take one another’s photo. That was less interesting to me than the guide explaining how the king and queen’s trains were so heavy, they had wheels built into the undersides to take some of the weight off the parader’s shoulders.
The artisans work a lot in Styrofoam and plastic, but still use papier-mache once in awhile. Mardi Gras World is quite large. We were walk through much of one warehouse, and there were at least four more. They provide floats for parades all over the world. While what is on the float changes many times, the floats themselves are recycled over and over again. They start designing Mardi Gras floats a year ahead.