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Mardi Gras along the Gulf Coast

| Updated Feb 24, 2014

The Gulf Coast is now recovered from the ravages of Katrina and the BP oil spill and is now celebrating Mardi Gras in communities large and small.

Here's the video:

From Mobile to New Orleans and all in between, the fun starts as early as two weeks before the Fat Tuesday final day before Lent and if you time a visit right down here, you can take in Mardi Gras parades every day and many a night. RV parks are all along the coast in Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana and this time of year, when the weather can still be slightly unpredictable, there are lots of vacancies.

Handing out beads at Gautier's night mardi gras parade

We made our way to the town of Gautier, MS and Shepard State Park, part of a group of two dozen plus Roadtrekers from all across the country invited down here for fun and food and Mardi Gras festivities at an event called “Pogo’s Smokin’ on the Bayou.”

Pogo himself

Pogo – real name Paul  Konowalchuk Pogorzelski (see why we just call him Pogo?) –  really lives on a Bayou that connects to the Gulf of Mexico. He timed the event for the town of Gautier’s big Mardi Gras night parade.

Not that we needed an excuse.

Pogo and his wife Vicki opened their hearts and home to us – even finding a way to squeeze a dozen Roadtreks in a vacant lot two doors down. Of course it didn't hurt that his next door neighbor Gordon Gollott, just happens to be the mayor of Gautier (pronounced Go-shea), a town of 18,000. The mayor even invited me to ride on the official town float at the night Mardi Gras parade.

bayou country
The bayou outside our camp spots at Shepard Sate Park in Gautier, MS

The local industry here is shipbuilding (that's what Pogo does) and the local passtime is hospitality.

The weather was typical for this time of year. Temperatures reached the low seventies a couple of times but we had lots of rain one day. And lots of fun all the time.

We had so much fun we convinced Pogo to make this an annual event. And next year, we're thinking about getting our own float for the parade. Towed by a Roadtrek, of course.

Scroll down to see more photos and click the video above for a look at the night parade. To make plans to join us  for next year or see the general chatter about this gathering and other Roadtreking topics, be sure to visit our Facebook Group.

Camp spots at Shepard State Park have water and electric and lots of room and privacy
Smokin' on the Bayou people
Smokin' on the Bayou people


The gulf coast
Jennifer with Mardi Gras beads and bling
We had our own parade of Roadtreks as we made our way around Gautier
Around the campfire back at Shepard State Park

Mike Wendland

Published on 2014-02-24

Mike Wendland is a multiple Emmy-award-winning Journalist, Podcaster, YouTuber, and Blogger, who has traveled with his wife, Jennifer, all over North America in an RV, sharing adventures and reviewing RV, Camping, Outdoor, Travel and Tech Gear for the past 12 years. They are leading industry experts in RV living and have written 18 travel books.

2 Responses to “Mardi Gras along the Gulf Coast”

February 24, 2014at4:32 pm, Maureen said:

Well done…this is another one for my bucket list. Love that the pastime is hospitality. Thx Mike

February 24, 2014at2:12 pm, Cheryl said:

I had a blast! Thank you Pogo & Vickie!

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