There is always a reason to celebrate in New Orleans and Easter is no exception. With parades, costume contests and speciality cakes, Easter is a great, family-friendly event in the Big Easy.
Burlesque performer, club owner and entrepreneur, Chris Owens, kicks the 2016 Easter parades into high gear as The Grand Duchess of Easter leads her floats and marching bands through the French Quarter. Setting off from the corner of Bourbon and Canal street dressed in her personally designed Easter ensemble and exotic Easter bonnet, Chris Owens greets the cheering crowds as her entourage throws beads and Easter trinkets.
A brass band follows her float, filling the air with march music and a group of Bourbon Street Showgirls follow closely behind. Even the pets get in on the act in New Orleans, as a chiwawa steals the show, proudly sitting inside an easter bonnet, while wearing its own flowery hat.
Elvis Presley impersonators ride down the street on bikes, handing out plastic eggs, beads and soft toys to the eager children and adults lining the road. The procession continues with a float with a different type of throw – carrots! The crowds duck as vegetables are hurled through the air but soon the beads are back as the Lakeview Burgers and Seafood float passes by and another marching band rounds up the parade.
Chris Owens is described as a singing and dancing international sensation. She originally moved to New Orleans in the 1960s, where she opened a nightclub, which was intended to be a low-key establishment. The club proved to be a fantastic success and soon moved to its current, more prominent location on the corner of Bourbon Street and St. Louis Street. Now at 83 years of age, she no longer performs daily and the club is a discotheque when she is not on stage. Her show has been named ‘the most electrifying one-woman show on earth’.
The Chris Owens Easter Parade is the second of three parades that roll through the streets of the French Quarter on Easter Sunday and the 2016 celebrations marked the 33rd year for Chris Owens’ Easter extravaganza.