Baton Rouge has the best Carnival parade in the whole state

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... or so claims this article in today's Chicago Tribune. (Big props to Clay of the Nola-dishu blog for finding it.) It's the Spanish Town Mardi Gras Parade:

Gumbo and jambalaya won't be ready for hours. Right now, it's bloody marys, Cajun-spiced eggs and king cake, that deliciously gooey circular pastry in which a small baby figurine has been baked. Beads have yet to fly, but they will. It is the Saturday before Fat Tuesday, and 80 miles north of New Orleans, the best parade in the state is about to happen.

The best parade in the state? Is that a throwdown to New Orleans or what? I'm sure the Spanish Town Mardi Gras Parade is very nice, but ... compared to Muses? Zulu? Rex? Krewe du Vieux?

This year's Spanish Town Mardi Gras Parade is Feb. 13. It has something to do with pink flamingos (the lawn decoration, not the movie). And the theme is "XXXpress It," but then there's an "Alcohol-Free Family Zone" (???).

Best parade in the state.

XXXpress It + "Family Zone."

These are English words, yes, but sense they do not make and confused am I. Help me here, Gambiteers in Baton Rouge. Do we need more flamingos at our Mardi Gras? More Les Miles? What are are we doing wrong in New Orleans?

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