Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Mardi Gras in America: Older Adults in Long-Term Care Have a Ball (Video 1:57)

No matter where they live, older adults in cities across America  love participating annually in the popular celebration of Mardi Gras. That wonderful day known also as “Fat Tuesday” will fall on the day before the Christian season of Lent starts. Older adults celebrating this world-famous Carnival season often have parties and small parades. In New Orleans, street parades attracting thousands of local residents and curious tourists occur daily. Parades are held during the day and at night.

Growing up in New Orleans, I loved this magical season. Mardi Gras parades created wonderful memories for me. The excitement of swimming in an ocean of festivity, the buoyancy from living fantastic fantasies thrilled my senses. They connected me with the same wave of wonderment flowing through every child who ever lived on this planet.

I store my New Orleans memories in a marvelous, mental, treasure chest painted with purple, green, and gold brush strokes, the official colors of Mardi Gras. All grown up, I still smile when I look inside. No doubt, many older adults will be smiling during Mardi Gras season this year and in the future.

Upcoming Mardi Gras Dates:

Mardi Gras can fall on any Tuesday between February 3 and March 9.
These are upcoming Mardi Gras dates. Keep in mind that Mardi Gras isn't just one day. It's a season with numerous parades, balls, and parties starting on January 6.
  • February 13, 2018
  • March 5, 2019
  • February 25, 2020
  • February 16, 2021
  • March 1, 2022
  • February 21, 2023
  • February 13, 2024
  • March 4, 2025
  • February 17, 2026
  • February 9, 2027
Through the years, I have featured older adults celebrating in various cities. Join residents in this Mardi Gras celebration at McMahon Tomlinson Nursing Center in Lawton, Oklahoma. Let’s hear it for Oklahoma! They had a ball with a parade, dancing, and great music from the 77th Army Band. The parade has started! Have some punch! As they say in New Orleans (and sometimes in Oklahoma), “Laissez le bon temps rouler! Let the good times roll!”

Frances Shani Parker, Author
Becoming Dead Right: A Hospice Volunteer in Urban Nursing Homes is available in paperback and e-book editions in America and other countries at online and offline booksellers.
Hospice and Nursing Homes Blog

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