NEW ORLEANS -- Bayou St. John draws big crowds during the summer and on the Fourth of July.
This year a boat parade is scheduled on the bayou, where witnesses are spotting more alligators lurking in the area.
"We used some blue tarp and plastic bags to show our patriotism this year," said Katrina Brees, pointing out the boats decked in red, white and blue that will be on the bayou on Wednesday.
Krewe of Kolossos is gearing up to take on Bayou St. John by boat to celebrate Independence Day and nature at its best.
"We hope that those who come out will bring motorless canoes, pirogues, inflatable boats to really be mindful of the treasure that's Bayou St. John," said Brees, who is the krewe's grand marshal.
The Bayou draws other popular events to Mid-City, including Bayou Boogaloo and Greek Fest. It is also home to alligators.
Snapshots from Eyewitness News viewer Allen Parks capture a gator, which up until recently found a favorite sunning spot on a waterfront lawn.
A trapper who works for the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries told WWL-TV that over the weekend a 7'5" alligator was captured from Park Island and near the railroad bridge.
The trapper who recently tracked down those alligators said it's relatively common to stumble across 4 to 5 foot alligators on Bayou Saint John.
"They stay far enough from the boat, we stay far enough from the alligator," said tour guide Sonny Averett.
The tour guide and his business partner, Sara Howard, run Kayakitiyat, a popular kayaking business along the Bayou. They say gator sightings are common in the area.
"They really, once they see you coming they leave. I don't think anybody feeds them, so they don't come up to the boats," said Averett.
As the Krewe of Kolossos prepares for its Bayou debut, organizers aren't letting recent gator-sightings -- however big -- rain on their parade.
"I actually feel really safe on Bayou St. John for this one," said Brees.
On July 4, Krewe of Kolossos will begin its boat parade at Orleans Avenue. It will run from 5 to 8 p.m. All are welcome.
Organizers say nothing will be thrown from boats and they're asking participants to be respectful of boating and all laws.
A reminder: wildlife officials say don't feed the gators.
If you spot a nuisance gator, call the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries at (504) 284-2023.