If you’re riding or walking in a Carnival parade this year and still need beads and trinkets, you can get some great deals at the Recycling Center Bead Store, operated by the Arc of Greater New Orleans.

Located at 925 S. Labarre Road in Metairie, the store is open 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday and also on Feb. 10, and will sell cups, trinkets, stuffed animals, specialty beads and trinkets, all in great condition.

Arc of Greater New Orleans serves children and adults in Orleans, Jefferson, St. Bernard, Plaquemines and St. Tammany parishes with developmental and intellectual disabilities by providing services including personal care, employment, living assistance and respite care.

For more information, call (504) 837-5105 or go to www.arcgno.org.

It's Carnival time!

The Carnival season kicks off in full force this weekend with Family Gras in Metairie and three parades on both banks of Jefferson Parish.

The 11th annual Family Gras will take place Friday, Feb. 2 beginning at 5:30 p.m., and Saturday, Feb. 3, from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on the neutral ground of Veterans Memorial Boulevard across from Lakeside Shopping Center in Metairie.

On Friday, local musicians David Batiste and the Gladiators will start things off at 5:30 p.m., followed at 7:15 p.m. by Deacon John and the Ivories.

Saturday, the Imagination Movers take the stage at noon, followed at 1 p.m. by Remedy, a group of local teenagers who perform original compositions with classic, contemporary and alternative rock covers.

Nationally known musicians will also perform Saturday. At 2:15 p.m., John Oates takes the stage, followed at 4:15 p.m. by Michael McDonald. And beginning at 6 p.m., Cyndi Lauper will close out Family Gras.

In addition to music, Family Gras includes food and an art market with items including Louisiana photography, framed artwork, regional decor, folk art and hand-crafted jewelry.

There is also an area for kids ages 12 and younger with face painting and interactive games.

Admission is free.

And for those who want to experience the event with backstage access and premium stage viewing, a two-day VIP Royal Pass is available for $125. It includes one meal and a drink on Friday, and two drinks and two meals on Saturday. The Royal Pass is available only as a two-day pass, and tickets are nonrefundable.

For more information, go to www.visitjeffersonparish.com.

Jefferson parades

The 2018 parade schedule:

7 p.m. Friday: Krewe of Excalibur

11:45 a.m. Saturday: Krewe of Adonis (West Bank)

6 p.m. Saturday: Krewe of Caesar 

7 p.m. Feb. 9: Krewe of Centurions 

6:30 p.m. Feb. 10: Krewe of Isis

4:30 p.m. Feb. 11: Corps de Napoleon 

5:30 p.m. Feb. 11: Krewe of Athena

6:30 p.m. Feb. 11: Krewe of Pandora

10 a.m. Fat Tuesday: Krewe of Argus, followed by the truck parades of Elks Jeffersonians and Elks Trucks 

Adonis begins near the intersection of General DeGaulle and Behrman Highway, goes down Behrman and turns onto Carol Sue Avenue, then onto Terry Parkway. It disbands near Oakwood Shopping Center.

All Metairie parades begin outside Clearview Shopping Center at the corner of El Dorado and Houma Boulevard, head east down Veterans Memorial Boulevard to Severn Avenue, where they will turn left or north. They make a U-turn on 12th Street and proceed on the other side of Severn. Back at Veterans, they turn left and head to Bonnabel.

(Excalibur is an exception: It continues on Veterans and disbands at Behrman.)

All other parades go down Bonnabel and U-turn at Feronia Street, rolling on the other side of Bonnabel, turning on Vets and disbanding at Martin Behrman Avenue.

On Fat Tuesday, both truck parades – Elks Trucks and Jefferson Trucks – will line up behind Argus. They follow the same route, but U-turn at Nero Street and Bonnabel.

Maps will be published in Thursday's Beaucoup section.


Eva Jacob Barkoff writes about the people and events in Jefferson Parish. She can be reached at ejbarkoff@gmail.com