Mardi Gras, Asheville style!

Grab your flambeaux and your feathers!  Even if you can’t squeeze a quick trip to Rio
or New Orleans for the Carnival festivities, Asheville is brimming with
colorful opportunities to celebrate the “Boeuf Gras!” 
In the food-topian paradise that is Asheville, every Tuesday
could be described as “Fat Tuesday.” Set this weekend apart from the standard scrumptious fare that Asheville has to offer, and indulge your sweet
tooth with a traditional “King Cake” from Short Street Bakery! For those unfamiliar
with this tradition, the “king cake” results from the merging of the Roman festival “Saturnalia” and the Catholic liturgical calendar. During Saturnalia, a small bean
would be hidden in a pastry, and the lucky reveler that discovered the bean in
his dessert would be named “King of the Feast.” When Saturnalia fused with
Catholicism, the bean was replaced by a figurine of a baby, representative of
the infant Jesus that was visited by three kings (another source for the name “King
Cake.”) At Short Street bakery, they partake in this ancient ritual while
adding their own locavore twist: delicious, all natural, and locally sourced
Mardi Gras cupcakes with a baby figurine hidden in each dozen! Enjoy your
status as “King of the Feast,” but be warned. In Portugal and France, the
finder of the King’s Cake Trinket is tasked with buying the cake next year!
This year’s Mardi Gras theme is “Where the Wild Things Are,”
so shed those inhibitions and bedeck, bejewel, and bedazzle yourself! To put the finishing touches on
your Mardi Gras accouterments, ZaPow Gallery will open before the parade to
share beads, king cake, and face paint ($8 for small face paint, $15 for the
whole face). This family-friendly event begins at noon on Sunday, March 2, and
will wrap up as the Mardi Gras Parade commences.
So mark your calendars, the “Wild Things” emerge this Sunday
at 3 pm, and will be following the parade route outlined here.  This event is strongly emphasized to be family
friendly, and will not include alcohol. Mille
to the wonderful folks at Asheville Mardi Gras, whose purpose is to
strengthen Western North Carolina connections through promoting creativity,
frivolity, and celebrations based on the celebration of Mardi Gras.

L’aissez les bons temps rouler! (Let the good times roll!)

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