Mardi Gras Happenings 

1860's Hardshell Cafe Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue; special for Mardi Gras, Feb. 17 and 25 Lightin' Bottle; Feb 18 Tony Campanella; Feb. 24 Steve Pecaro and Feb. 25 Jimmy Lee in the courtyard. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. 1860's Hard Shell Cafe & Bar, 1860 S Ninth St., St. Louis, 314-231-1860.

59th Street Mardi Gras Italiano Festival: Celebrate Bella's first annual Mardi Gras on the Hill with an all-day block party with music, karaoke and games. Sat., Feb. 25, 10 a.m. Bella's, 5838 Southwest Blvd., 314-644-1777.

Al Hrabosky's Mardi Gras: Start off with the Mardi Gras Parade at Al's and end your night there too with their DJ. Sat., Feb. 25, 10-3 a.m. Al Hrabosky's Ballpark Saloon, 800 Cerre St., St. Louis, 314-241-6969, www.alsballparksaloon.com.

Beggin' Strips Krewe of Barkus Parade: Register your dog (either online at mardigrasinc.com or at Clementine's) to march in the Krewe of Barkus Pet Parade; costumes for humans and animals alike are strongly encouraged. Sun., Feb. 19, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., $10 donation to Open Door Animal Sanctuary encouraged, 314-771-5110.

The Benevolent Ball: The Krewe of Benevolence hosts this event with music by SMASH band; tickets include beer, beads and snacks; cash prizes for the best costumes and best table decorations; the theme is "The Small Screen." Sat., Feb. 18, 7:30 p.m., $20 in advance, $25 at door, 314-771-5110, www.mardigrasinc.com. South Broadway Athletic Club, 2301 S Seventh St., St. Louis, 314-776-4833, www.southbroadwayac.org.

The Shanti's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; $20. Shanti, 825 Allen, St. Louis, 314-241-4772.

Cajun Buffet: Fat Tuesday's buffet includes Jambalaya, sausage, beans and rice, mostaccioli, hot links and po' boys. Tue., Feb. 28, 5-9 p.m., $9.95. Norton's, 808 Geyer, St. Louis, 314-436-0828.

Carson's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. Carson's, 1712 S 9th, St. Louis, 314-436-2707.

Cat's Meow Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. Cat's Meow, 2600 S 11th St., St. Louis, 314-776-8617.

Charter Communications Mardi Gras Grand Parade: Soulard salutes the small screen in this year's parade that travels from Broadway and Chouteau Ave to the heart of Soulard. Sat., Feb. 25, 11 a.m.-2 p.m.

Chicken Wing Eating Contest: Taste of Soulard venue; eat up the most wings, win some cash. Tue., Feb. 21, $10 per entrant, www.hammerstones.net. Hammerstone's, 2028 S. 9th, St. Louis, 314-773-5565.

Clementine's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue; register for the Mystic Krewe of Barkus Dog Parade from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Feb. 19; annual Tacky Ball Gown contest on Feb. 23; High Heel Drag Race on Feb 25 at 3 p.m. with Allen Avenue Awards to follow. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. Clementine's, 2001 Menard St., St. Louis, 314-664-7869, www.clementinesbar.com.

Club Buca's Mardi Gras: St. Louis' premiere nightclub on the Landing is home to the official Mardi Gras Parade after party; also open Fat Tuesday. Sat., Feb. 25, 2 p.m., 314-231-2822. Club Buca, 710 N. 2nd St. (on Laclede's Landing), St. Louis, 314-231-BUCA.

DB's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. DB's Sports Bar, 1615 S Broadway, St. Louis, 314-588-2141.

Delta Dental Mardi Gras, Zoo Style: A family-friendly celebration at the Living World at the St. Louis Zoo with music by Bob Case; kids can make their own masks and watch performances about the importance of dental care. Sun., Feb. 26, 12-3 p.m., free. Saint Louis Zoo, Forest Park, St. Louis, 314-781-0900, www.stlzoo.org.

Eighteenth Century Costume Ball: Celebrate Mardi Gras as the settlers did at this costume ball. Sat., Feb. 25, 7-11 p.m., $8. Knights of Columbus Hall-Cahokia, 100 E Fifth, Cahokia, Ill.

Fat Tuesday featuring the Bud Light Party Zone: Parade begins at 6:30 p.m.; Dr. Zhivegas performs. Tue., Feb. 28, free, 314-771-5110, www.mardigrasinc.com. Kiener Plaza, 7th & Market streets, St. Louis.

Fete du Bon Vieux Temps: Step back 200 years in time and celebrate Mardi Gras like the French settlers did; exhibits, tours and presentations abound at the state historic sites. Sat., Feb. 25, 2-5 p.m., free. Cahokia Courthouse State Historic Site, 107 Elm (Hwy. 157 & Rte. 3), Cahokia, Ill. 618-332-1782.

Freddie's and JJ's Clubhouse Mardi Gras Shuttle: Be safe and leave your driving woes to the Freddie's and JJ's Clubhouse shuttle. Sat., Feb. 25, 9 a.m.-6 p.m., $2. Freddie's, 4112 Manchester, St. Louis, 314-371-1333.

Gateway to the West H.O.G. Chapter Mardi Gras Ball: Costume contest (the party theme is "Small Screen") and live music by ConCokShun; proceeds benefit local charities. Sat., Feb. 18, 7 p.m., $15, call 314-845-9900 for info. Meramec Arnold Elks Lodge, 1515 Miller Rd, Imperial.

Gladstone's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue; additionally, schedule includes karaoke beginning at 9 p.m. on Fri., Feb 17 and Fri., Feb 24; music by Casual Labor starting at 8 p.m. on Sat., Feb. 18 and from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sat., Feb. 25; Catfish Willie at 7 p.m. on Sat., Feb. 25; and Chicago Bob starting at 7 p.m. on Fat Tuesday, Feb. 28. Gladstone's, 1800 S. 10th, St. Louis, 314-231-6339.

Joanie's Mardi Gras Celebration: It's a taste of Soulard venue with a host of events, starting with Sit and Spin Karaoke from 2-11 p.m. on Saturday, February 18; Silly Pet Tricks at 1:45 p.m. (register by 11:30 a.m.) and live music by Hudson and the Hoodoo Cats from 2:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday, February 19; Sit and Spin Karaoke at 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, February 23; a Mardi Gras Party Package with a heated tent, unlimited Cajun buffet, beer, well drinks and hurricanes, beads and official poster, private Port-a-Potties and a DJ for $100 a person on Saturday, February 25; and live music with Oliver Johnson beginning at 7 p.m. on Fat Tuesday, February 28. www.joaniespizzeria.com. Joanie's Pizzeria, 2101 Menard at Russell, St. Louis, 314-865-1994.

John D. McGurk's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue; also during Mardi Gras weekend and Fat Tuesday there's DJ Charlie Chan, fun, music and games; open Feb. 19 for the Soulard Dog Parade, pets are welcome. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. John D. McGurk's Irish Pub, 1200 Russell Blvd., St. Louis, 314-776-8309, www.mcgurks.com.

Johnny's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. Johnny's Restaurant & Bar, 1017 Russell Boulevard, St. Louis, 314-865-0900.

Juniper Grill's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. Juniper Grill Bistro and Wine Bar, 1928 South 12th St., St. Louis, 314-621-9195, www.juniper-grill.com.

The Krewe of Brew Ball: Great food paired with great brews; music from Dangerous Kitchen, hosted by Schlafly and St. James Winery. Sat., Feb. 18, 7:30 p.m., $35 in advance; $40 at door. Schlafly Tap Room, 2100 Locust St., St. Louis, 314-241-2337, www.schlafly.com.

Lafayette Pub's Mardi Gras: Start off the day with kegs and eggs breakfast buffet from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m.; throughout the day and night there's barbecued pork as well as stilt walkers, midgets, dozens of hot painted women, DJs, giveaways and beads galore. Sat., Feb. 25, 7 a.m. Lafayette Pub and Grill, 1551 South 7th, St. Louis.

Lagniappe's Private Mardi Gras Party: Taste of Soulard venue; on Saturday, reserve your spot ahead of time at this party with music, food, beads, beer, hurricanes in a clean, warm environment; limit is 200 people. Sat., Feb. 25, 11 a.m.-8 p.m., $45. Lagniappe's, 2501 S. Ninth, St. Louis, 314-771-2090, www.lanyaps.com.

Lynch Street Bistro's Mardi Gras: A DJ spins on parade day. Sat., Feb. 25, 2-8 p.m. Lynch Street Bistro, 1031 Lynch, St. Louis, 314-772-5777, www.lynchstreetbistro.com.

Mardi Gras Celebration at the Sheldon: Trumpeter Bob Ceccarini and pianist Pat Joyce celebrate Mardi Gras with a swinging New Orleans-style jazz performance; ticket price also includes coffee and pastries at 9 a.m. Tue., Feb. 28, 10 a.m., $10 to $12, 314-534-1111. Sheldon Concert Hall, 3648 Washington Blvd., St. Louis, 314-533-9900, www.sheldonconcerthall.org.

Mardi Crawl: This all-ages urban crawl winds through 20 mall stores in St. Louis Centre; listen to 65 local and national music acts; tickets limited, available at St. Louis Centre Administration Office, Streetside Records and MetroTix; see website for updated details. Thu., Feb. 23, 7 p.m.-1 a.m., $15-$25, www.mardicrawl.com. St. Louis Centre, 6th and Locust.

Mayor's Mardi Gras Masquerade 2006: This black-tie, who's-who affair is a charitable event produced by the Mardi Gras Foundation Inc., sponsored by Anheuser-Busch and hosted by Mayor Slay. Fri., Feb. 24, 7 p.m.-midnight, $100-$500, 314-622-4000, www.stlouismayorsball.org.

Molly's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. Molly's, 816 Geyer Ave., St. Louis, 314-241-6200.

Mystic Knights of the Purple Haze Ball: Dress up and get down with guests Chubby Carrier and the Bayou Swamp Band; food available for purchase; costume contest for the of honor being crowned king and queen of the ball; 21 and up only. Fri., Feb. 24, 8 p.m.-1 a.m., $20 in advance, cash only. Casa Loma Ballroom, 3354 Iowa Ave., St. Louis, 314-664-8000, www.casalomaballroom.com.

Nadine's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue; enjoy a buffet brunch on Feb. 25 from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. with live music with Dee Dee and the Dinos. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. Nadine's, 1931 S. 12th St., St. Louis, (314) 436-3045.

Norton's Cafe "Night in New Orleans": Crawfish boil, spinach and goat cheese salad with andouille dressing and pecan-pie dessert along with six microbrew samplers. Thu., Feb. 16, 6-9 p.m., $30. Norton's, 808 Geyer, St. Louis, 314-436-0828.

Norton's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue; Mardi Gras package offered on Feb. 25 for $100 includes a buffet, rail drinks, beer, hurricanes and beads as a live DJ spins inside, a wrist band lets you come and go all day as you please. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. Norton's, 808 Geyer, St. Louis, 314-436-0828.

Off Broadway's Mardi Gras Events: Parade Day's band is Ceremony of Darkness. Sat., Feb. 25, $5. Off Broadway, 3509 Lemp Ave., St. Louis, 314-773-3363.

PETsMART Wiener Dog Derby: Register your dachshund by 10 a.m. to race in one of three divisions by age —Cocktail Wienies, Ballpark Franks and Hot Dogs — and enjoy Yappy Hour at the park starting at 12 p.m.; race begins at 2 p.m. Sun., Feb. 19, $10 per entrant; proceeds benefit the Dachshund Rescue Foundation, 314-771-5110, www.mardigrasinc.com. Soulard Market Park, S Eighth St. and Lafayette Ave., St. Louis.

Smiley's Pizza and Pub Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. Smiley's Pizza & Pub, 900 Barton St. (at Ninth St), St. Louis, 314-547-8807.

Soulard Bastille's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue featuring King Baby cake; after Saturday's parade, there's a dance party on the streets with a live DJ and beads tossed every hour on the hour from noon to 8 p.m. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sat., Feb. 25, 12-8 p.m., $20. Bastille Cobalt Grill, 1027 Russell, St. Louis, 314-664-4408.

Soulard Coffee Garden's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. Soulard Coffee Garden, 910 Geyer, St. Louis, 314-241-1464.

Soulard Restaurant's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. Soulard's Restaurant & Bar, 1731 S 7th St., St. Louis, 314-241-7956, www.soulards.com.

Southern Comfort Taste of Soulard: Purchase a book of seven tickets to sample signature dishes — including one taste of Southern Comfort — from participating Soulard eateries; free trolley service provided on Saturday. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20, 314-771-5110, www.mardigrasinc.com.

Spooty's Mardi Gras: Taste of Soulard venue. Sat., Feb. 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 19, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., $20. Spooty's, 1026 Geyer Ave., 314-588-1807.

Subterranean Ball: The ball, in its 14th year, is sponsored by the Soulard Social Aid & Pleasure Club and will have music from Jumpin' Johnny Sansone & Zydeco Billie Barnett; cash and prizes for best costumes; the theme is "When You Wish Upon a Shooting Star"; buy advance tickets at Ticketmaster or South Broadway Athletic Club. Sat., Feb. 18, 7:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m., $15 in advance; $20 at door. South Broadway Athletic Club, 2301 S Seventh St., St. Louis, 314-776-4833, www.southbroadwayac.org. mardi gras

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