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Merry Mardi Gras, Milwaukee. (PHOTO:

Mardi Gras in Milwaukee

Even though Milwaukee is 1,000 miles from New Orleans, celebrating Mardi Gras in Brew City is one big easy.

Potawatomi Bingo Casino has a four-day celebration that started on Feb. 8 and runs through Feb. 12 featuring "lavishly dressed showgirls" participating in parades at noon, 2 p.m., 4 p.m. and every hour from 6 p.m. to midnight.

The fun also includes psychic readings from Mary Ellen Pride, caricatures from artist Bill Begos and live music. Go here for scheduled band performances.

Radio Milwaukee (WYMS-FM) hosts its annual Mardi Gras party at Turner Hall Ballroom, 1040 N. 4th St. on Tuesday, Feb, 12. Maxie's Southern Comfort will provide food and Chicago soul band The Right Now and Milwaukee's Extra Crispy Brass Band will bring the sounds. The fun starts at 6:30 p.m. and the cost is $14. Go here for more info and tickets.

Maxie's South Comfort, 6732 W. Fairview Ave., offers a Lundi Gras (Monday) and Mardi Gras (Tuesday) special menu featuring shrimp remoulade, crab and oyster stew, blackened red fish, duck gumbo, vegetarian red beans and rice, frog legs and more.

Marcus Doucette and Tarik Moody from Radio Milwaukee 88.9 will spin New Orleans' classics from 2 to 6 p.m. The Uptown Savages will play later in the evening.

Mardi Gras – also called "Carnival" – refers to celebratory events beginning on or after Epiphany and ending on the day before Ash Wednesday. "Mardi Gras" is French for "Fat Tuesday," and is often the last chance to eat rich food and indulge in alcohol before Lent, which begins on Ash Wednesday.


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