MOBILE, Ala. (WALA)–On what should have been the opening night for the big Boom Boom, COVID-19 knocking Mobile’s finest, the Conde Cavaliers, out of their headlining spot for the first time since 1977.
The last time the entire Mardi Gras parade season was shelved was in the 1940’s.
Downtown Mobile was reduced to its usual afternoon traffic Friday night, instead of thousands of revelers packing the streets and fancy floats overflowing with throws.
This time around a makeshift Mardi Gras of sorts kicked off the celebration on a much smaller scale hosted by the Order of Doves.
A marching band rolling through a small parking lot as people drove by, doing what they can to keep the spirit alive, but a sign of the times..
The pandemic taking its toll on business owners who rely on Mardi Gras for a big boom in sales.
“Tonight’s gonna be the first test.”
Jeff Jordan says his shop, Mardi Gras and more, has done surprisingly well in the weeks leading up to carnival season.
“I was actually probably up about 20% from last year for the preseason because you know people are… they want something… they still gonna celebrate,” said Jordan.
However, Jordan doesn’t expect that trend to keep up for long.
“Of course we’re gonna be down.”
He hopes more people will come down on the weekends and on big days like Joe Cain and Fat Tuesday.
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