NEW ORLEANS - It's getting pretty crowded along Orleans Avenue between City Park and Carrollton Avenues in New Orleans.
Most of the folks who are already set up along the neutral grounds will be spending the night outside, reserving their spots for Saturday's super-Krewe of Endymion. It's become a Mardi Gras tradition for Chad Lederman.
"It's all worth it," Lederman said. When Endymion comes down, you have a great spot and friends and family, they're all around you."
Kristina Talbert's daughter is an Endymion maid this year. "I knew I had to do it to get a spot for the kids," said Talbert. "I knew I was going to have come competition, but it was actually pretty easy."
Endymion founder Ed Muniz spent some time meeting and greeting parade goers.
"To see the growth and to see the way people love the parade, it really makes you very happy," said Muniz. He also says the musical guests on the neutral ground stage will include the Top Cats, Bucktown Allstars and a possible surprise.
"Carrie Underwood may try to come out here tomorrow, just to say hello," said Muniz. If you're looking for a place to park during the Endymion parade, there's no better place than Degado Community College. There are 1,100 spaces available and $25 lets you park all day long.
An extra $10 pays for unlimited restroom privileges. "Many of the proceeds will be used to support our student organizations and our athletic department, as well as some upgrades to the campus," said Delgado Executive Dean Arnel Cosey.
Back on the neutral grounds, excitement is building. "It gets me really excited for Mardi Gras," said Lederman. "Obviously, living in New Orleans, you can do a lot of great people watching. It's great to be in this area of town and see everyone else set up." The music kicks off on the neutral grounds at noon, Saturday and Endymion is scheduled to step off at 4:15 p.m.