Mardi Gras preps in Cenla - KALB-TV News Channel 5 & CBS 2

Mardi Gras preps in Cenla

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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB News Channel 5)- Mardi Gras is in the air here in Cenla. Despite today's rainy weather local krewes are continuing to gear up for this weekend's festivities. News Channel 5's Rachael Penton takes a look at Mardi Gras weekend parade preps.

The barricades are out on the streets of Alexandria which means one thing- the countdown to parade time is underway.

"Last year we got a little rain and hopefully this year it's going to stay dry and be wonderful weather so we couldn't be more excited for this year," says AMGA Parade Chair Chris Chelette.

Cenla will celebrate Mardi Gras this weekend with it's three annual parades. Spectators and participants like Children's Parade Grand Marshall Bayley Huffman are getting excited.

"Being the Grand Marshall is absolutely an honor. I can not wait and so my favorite part actually is going to be seeing all those little kids out there," says Huffman.  

But it's not all beads and moon pies- there's a lot of work that goes into prepping for these parades.

"The City of Alexandria is gearing up for the big weekend by getting the barricades out this week but local law enforcement is preparing for streets filled with a lot of people."

"We will deploy extra shifts, manpower. Any shift or officer that is not working currently that day or that night will be out to help us," says Lt. Bruce Fairbanks of the Alexandria Police Department.

Since Mardi Gras began in Cenla two decades ago the weekend has continued to grow. Thousands of people will flock to the streets for the parades.

"We could never have fathomed were we would be at today and we still see it growing each year. We have one or two krewes that enter the association each year so it's just a continual growth and we're very excited about that," adds Chelette.

So stay safe Cenla, and let the good times roll.

"Just to make sure that everybody stays safe. Don't get complacent over a five cent pair of beads," adds Fairbanks.

"I hope everyone comes out and has a great time," says Chelette.

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