NEW ORLEANS -- They say the Marigny is a hidden hot spot on Mardi Gras morning in New Orleans.
Judging from the crowd in front of the R-Bar at Royal and Kerlerec, the secret is out.
"This is just folks in the street all having fun," said actor Harry Shearer, a part-time resident of the neighborhood.
The Marigny is the epicenter of Carnival costuming. Shearer showed up as a post-confession Lance Armstrong, complete with his own Oprah and unique yellow bracelet.
"It says lie strong. Always good advice at a time like this."
One group paraded around as pies that escaped the fire that burned down Hubig's Bakery in the Marigny.
"We miss Hubigs," they chanted. "We love Hubigs."
Karen Fennel traveled from all the way from Denver to join in the fun.
"We have to come here to have such a good time," she said. "We have a wonderful time. People are really great and friendly and it's just a terrific crowd."
Ed Doskey of New Orleans and his bride Jessica got married in the Marigny.
"Honestly, it's my bride's idea, she proposed to me about a month ago, maybe five weeks ago and we were in the process of having these custom-made costumes for Mardi Gras, so we thought they would double perfectly as wedding outfits," said Doskey.
There are also dozens of brightly costumed walking krewes parading down Royal Street into the French Quarter, each marching to the beat of their own Bohemian rhythms and brass bands.
"To me this captures the spirit of Mardi Gras," said Carnival historian Errol Laborde. "Anybody who goes to Mardi Gras and doesn't experience this is missing something."
"What I tell people from out of town is Mardi Gras isn't one day, Mardi Gras isn't even Carnival season, it's with us all-year round in one way or another," said Shearer.