With the exception of the Cardinals home opener and any resulting World Series parades, the Saturday before Mardi Gras is the biggest party day in the city -- and it also involves a parade. More than 130 marching units and krewe floats comprise the River City Casino Grand Parade, which steps off at 11 a.m. today in front of Busch Stadium (Broadway and Poplar Street; www.stlmardigras.org). This merry caravan of good-timers will march until they hit Anheuser-Busch in Soulard -- it's the neighborhood full of teeming hordes of purple-and-green-bedecked people flinging beads about. You'll hear it before you see it. Mardi Gras Inc. and the St. Louis Police would like to remind you that bottles, cans, backpacks and coolers are prohibited in Soulard, and there are fines for public nudity and urinating anywhere but in the Porta-Potties. So don't do it. But do have fun, take care of each other and enjoy a day outside, drinking and frolicking. Even if it's below freezing.
Sat., Feb. 9, 2013

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