METAIRIE, La. — A big weekend ahead in Jefferson parish. Family Gras gets ready to put on a show and several parades are set to roll, including one that's making its big debut.

Joseph Lacoste is feeling a bit anxious, because the Krewe he founded with his wife Gwen rolls Saturday for the first time.

"I guess that's what you'd call it, the final stretch," he said chuckling. "If there's such a thing as controlled insanity."

With five children, the couple have a deep love for Carnival they wanted to share with others. One day while sitting in the Mardi Gras World parking lot, they came up with the idea to start the Krewe of Mad Hatters.

"So the idea is to create magic i peoples' lives, especially in children," he said.

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Look at the floats, and you'll see this year's theme is Alice in Wonderland.

"To get dressed up for one day, for one moment, and to be some other character and have fun with it, there's just so much joy," he said.

However look closer, because the magic, is in the details.

"We've enjoyed Jefferson Parish Mardi Gras throughout our marriage," Lacoste said. "To see Jefferson Parish Mardi Gras decline was really troubling to us, so we felt like if we wanted to change it, we wanted to do something a bit different."

Their parade includes almost 600 riders and 27 floats. People can expect fun hats, beads and other unique throws as well as floats with local bands and musicians on them as well as other surprises. With a love for charity work, Lacoste also helped make several dreams come true by having five children with Make A Wish ride on one of the floats.

"The idea of being able to bring charities into the parade gives us a lot of meaning," he said. "This year we've got Make A Wish Foundation, and next year I'm hoping to see several more."

With time ticking, the pressure is on for the Lacostes. However, they're ready to feel the excitement and see their wonderland bring Mardi Gras in Jefferson Parish life again.

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