Pensacola Mardi Gras Kick-Off Celebration

2021 Pensacola Mardi Gras Kick-Off Celebration

Pensacola Mardi Gras Inc. is postponing the 2021 Season Kick-Off Celebration and Blessing of the Krewe Fleets event previously scheduled on January 8th, 2021. This year, the event will be moved to the month of May and will kick-off an even larger Pensacola “Carnivale Celebration.”

Ticket sales will resume February 1, 2021 with General Admission tickets costing $50 / person and VIP $120 / person. If you have already bought tickets, this will be automatically transferred to the new date!

 

 

Same Mardi Gras Spirit, Amazing New Format

Obviously Covid-19 is on everyone’s mind these days and while many events and activities have been canceled, others have been modified to create a safer, more controlled environment. We want Mardi Gras to happen, so we have plans to celebrate as socially responsible as possible.

Producing and attending a socially responsible event right here in Pensacola is the top priority for all of us, and in order to have a socially responsible event it requires a change in venue which includes a maximum capacity of attendees.  We will limit attendance to 3000 and when we have that many guests (including VIP’s and Sponsors), we will close ticket sales. We all want Pensacola Mardi Gras to happen in 2021, but however we must be responsible, and our pledge is to provide a controlled and responsible event.

We made the decision to move the event from the still-parade format to a gated outdoor venue at the City of Pensacola Roger Scott Athletic Complex because we simply could not control the environment for our Krewes and their guests of anything in terms of safety if we invited everyone to downtown. We love the downtown businesses and can’t wait to get back and celebrate with them, however for Mardi Gras 2021 the decision is to guarantee an outdoor and controlled environment.  We will control access to the festivities and provide an outdoor Mardi Gras festival unlike anything Pensacola has ever experienced!

Mask Guidelines

Masks in one form or another have always been a big part of Mardi Gras. For 2021 we are adding a modern twist on this and inviting our friends and neighbors to “Laissez le masque le faire” or translated “Let the Mask Make it Happen!”  We encourage Krewes to decorate their masks, and enjoy an outdoor event with masks on at all times that guests are not eating or drinking.   In 2021, masks can and will let Mardi Gras happen!


Here at PMGI we have a mascot that has a lot of character and personality.  You may have noticed Mardi the Pensacola Mardi Gras dog has a mask on for 2021… Mardi’s mask is pretty fancy, right?

We think our amazing Krewes can do even better so we’re having a mask decoration contest as part of the Kick-Off event with a panel of esteemed judges. These judges will be roaming the grounds among the 3000 Krewe members observing which masks look best, and which Krewe they belong to. The top five will receive special recognition and Mayor Robinson may even agree to display some of the winners in City Hall throughout the Mardi Gras season!

 

Contactless Transactions

To expand on the socially responsible production of the Kick-Off event outside at Roget Scott, we wanted to find a way for ticketing, and all transactions to be touchless.  We are working with a technology company out of New Orleans (where else would you expect for Mardi Gras) to provide every attendee with a custom and personal RFID wristband that will allow each paid guest entry into the event and to redeem their included food and beverages that are included with admission, along with purchase more, all happening touchless. The RFID wristband company provides this technology to festivals and large events all over the county and is bringing this marvelous technology to Pensacola for the Pensacola Mardi Gras Kick-Off.  (Many of you recognize the technology if you’ve been to one of the Florida theme parks that use magic bands)

Paid attendees will receive their wristband(s) in the mail, based on their ticket purchase transaction (if you bought 2 tickets we will mail them both to you, etc…).  All General Admission ticket holders and VIP’s will receive their custom wristbands well in advance of the event so that you can go on line and activate them and store payment info through the app. That way, redeeming perks included with your ticket or any purchases you make at one of our incredible vendors at the event will be as simple as waving your wrist over a panel! Wristbands will be scanned at the gate for admission and will allow for only VIP’s  entry to VIP areas.

 

Ticket Information

Please note, because of the limited scale this event is 21+ only

Each general admission ticket will get free parking, access to the event, a special bbq pack provided by our friends at Smokin in the Square and (2) free beverages provided by our wonderful sponsors:
Beer from our friends at Bud Light Seltzer (The Lewis Bear Company)
Premium liquor bar featuring Wild Turkey, SKYY Vodka, Espolon Tequila;
a full bar from our friends at Southern Wine and Spirits and Campari USA;
Water / soda / Gatorade from our friends at Pepsi (Buffalo Rock)

We will also have Food Trucks and an array of vendors. We’ll have plenty of bars to reduce lines, and remember, all transactions will be touchless!

We have a strict limit of 3000 attendees, which will allow us to manage the dance areas and table seating in the safest manner possible.

 

VIP Upgrades

This extremely limited offering of VIP Tickets will grant access to a special VIP area with open bar, complimentary upscaled Cajun food specialties, private facilities and a prime stage viewing area. The special VIP tent area will allow for expanded seating for the VIP guests and come with a special parking pass giving you closer access for parking.

Your wristband will determine which areas you are able to enter so if all-access is your thing, get the VIP tickets quick, because those will be strictly limited.

The Party

The Chee-Weez

The Chee-Weez, a 80’s and 90’s rock and roll party band from New Orleans will liven up the event with their own brand of get up and dance cover songs performed in costume.   

Opening up for the Chee-Weez will be a classic NOLA brass jazz band, The New Orleans Ramblers Second Line Band , and in between a high energy DJ will keep the crowd going.

Of course, there will be plenty of 2nd line band marches, including the classic 2nd line escort of the costumed Krewes to the main stage where they will be blessed by Father, the Town Crier, and local dignitaries including elected and governmental officials.  Each Krewe that is blessed will receive the customary certificate recognizing their commitment to Pensacola Mardi Gras and authorizing their blessed participation in the 2021 season.

Portions of the Kick-Off event including the full Blessing of the Fleet are being broadcast live on one of the stations of our friends at Sinclair Broadcasting; and the blessing will be streamed live on many of our media partners sites.  These streamed proceedings will be available for viewing worldwide!

Pensacola Mardi Gras Inc. is postponing the 2021 Season Kick-Off Celebration and Blessing of the Krewe Fleets event previously scheduled on January 8th, 2021. This year, the event will be moved to the month of May and will kick-off an even larger Pensacola “Carnivale Celebration.”

Ticket sales will resume February 1, 2021 with General Admission tickets costing $50 / person and VIP $120 / person. If you have already bought tickets, this will be automatically transferred to the new date!