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Cold weather chills Mardi Gras turnout

Arlington native Joanna Smith, letft, and Caitlyn Nichol Thomas perform on the Broad Avenue stage during the downtown Mardi Gras Festival Saturday night.

Arlington native Joanna Smith, letft, and Caitlyn Nichol Thomas perform on the Broad Avenue stage during the downtown Mardi Gras Festival Saturday night.

ALBANY, Ga. — Temperatures weren’t the only numbers dropping this weekend.

Organizers for the Mardi Gras Street festival, one of the city’s biggest events each year, only saw about 6,000 people wander through the gates Saturday. At it’s peak, more than 30,000 have graced downtown during the event.

Tommy Gregors, one of the organizers of the event, said that the cold weather likely kept many folks at home.

“In 11 years of putting this event on, this was the coldest Mardi Gras on record,” Gregors said.

Gregors said that he believes weather was the main reason people stayed indoors Saturday rather than venture out downtown.

It’s the second year in a row that weather issues have impacted the event. Last year, the event was pushed back a weekend after heavy rains moved through the area.

Gregors said that event organizers will weigh their options but that he doesn’t believe there is a strong chance of the event moving to another weekend.

“We have done other events later in the spring and in the fall and none of them have been as successful as Mardi Gras,” Gregors said. “The closer you get to spring and summer, the more people get busy with other things during the weekend. Certainly we’ll weigh our options but experience tells us to keep it in early March.”

Organizers also do not believe that moving the SB&T Bike Race from under the umbrella of events had much of an impact on attendance. That event has been moved to a weekend in May and has joined up with a bike race series across the Southeast United States.

Comments

FryarTuk 1 year, 9 months ago

Regrettably I did not participate in Mardi Gas festivities. It was just too cold. In the past I have invited revelers to come and participate but no takers this year. I did ride around and enjoy the foot race. I hope it turned out well. I haven't seen much about it. I also think we need to organize a bike race to go along with the event. SB&T moved to Lee County. Let them stay.

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WTFwtf 1 year, 9 months ago

Tuk u seem to comment on everything. Starting to wonder why

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FryarTuk 1 year, 9 months ago

Lemme know when you find the reason. But I think it's because I'm a frustrated editor.

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chinaberry25 1 year, 9 months ago

Wasn't it earlier this year? I have never been, but I do know one of the restaurants in the hey day several years ago said they made $400 profit and would never open again. Come down on the entrance fee and they will come in mass. $3 is usually the cost of a good craft show. Make more money that way because more show up and so do the vendors when more folks come. Charge $3 for everybody, kids the same price.

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DebBruner 1 year, 9 months ago

Think it might be better if the photo was from this year and not last year? JoAnna performed last year..

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boyoboy 1 year, 9 months ago

Change it to April or May so the weather will be better. Wow!

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