NEW ORLEANS -- While Rex and Zulu made their way down St. Charles Avenue in New Orleans, there was another Mardi Gras party brewing a short distance from the French Quarter in the Marigny.
Revelers gathered at the corner of Royal and Kerlerec streets to take part in Carnival, the way it was before the super krewes.
Folks in the Marigny take their costumes very seriously. Each reveler is like a finely crafted float on parade in a part of town known for its cool nightclubs and restaurants.
Brian Johnston dressed up as actress Tippi Hedren in Hitchcock classic "The Birds," complete with gray dress, black birds and phone booth.
"I like showing off a costume, but I also like to see everyone else's costumes," said Johnston. "Everybody is more creative on this side of Esplanade Avenue."
Nick Galliano dressed as a French Quarter lamppost.
"Love New Orleans," said Galliano. "Want to be part of New Orleans."
The costumes also included a family of "Smurfs," the band Kiss, a man driving a banana mobile and a number of outfits with BP related themes.
Strolling parades also come at you from every direction in the Marigny.
The "Mondo Kayo" parade had a latin flavor. The St. Anthony Ramblers were accompanied by the Panorama Brass Band. And, the Society of St. Anne was led by a group of friends in marching band costumes from the fictitious "St. Madonna's Academy of the Accidental Conception."
People enjoying the festivities on the other side of the quarter say they wouldn't think of starting Mardi Gras Day any other way.