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Defender Picks


Tube Sock Hopefuls Gearing Up For 610 Stompers Tryouts

by Brad Rhines

The moustache rides again, as the 610 Stompers hold open auditions for those who think they have the moves to make it big. America’s best dance krewe will take over The 12 Bar on Fulton St.  from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, where hopefuls will compete for a chance to don the red satin jacket, short shorts, and tube socks that have become a familiar sight along the parade routes in New Orleans. 

Judge Ousts Mr. Mardi Gras

Mardi Gras World founder and resident impresario Blaine Kern has been relegated to man in the moon status. A judge ruled today that Mr. Mardi Gras would have to turn over operations of his company to his son, Barry Kern. The transfer of power atop Carnival is the result of the elder Kern's apparent lack of follow through on an agreement that was hammered out last fall to keep the dream of Carnival 2011 alive. Federal judge Kern Reese also called for an immediate shareholders meeting to be held in the wake of the news. Shareholders were rumored to be upset about this, as there was little time to prepare a costume.

Mardi Gras World Still Turns

When Mardi Gras was on the line and the captains of three superkrewes were at the table, the old man and his son were able to settle their differences. But, apparently, the dispute that took Mardi Gras World off its axis is still churning. Carnival float impresario Barry Kern, son of Mardi Gras World founder and original float impresario, Blaine Kern, recently filed his second lawsuit against his dad in less than a year. The younger Kern claims his father failed to live up to his end of a bargain the pair struck to keep the family company afloat.

Anderson Cooper, Bead Master

Anderson Cooper has picked up a lot about New Orleans on his umpteen visits to the City of Dreams. He's shown a fondness for Cajun cooking, and a fascination with the subtleties of red-hot populists. But, at the postponed Endymion parade last Sunday, the silver fox took a step into true yat territory with his apparent mastery of throwing beads. Bravo Network bigshot Andy Cohen - who also rode in the shortened Endymion - told New York Magazine that Cooper was the only one of the celebrity riders on the multistar stair truck with a true acumen for throw people somethin'. 

Mardi Gras Rewind

As offices and awkward conversation replaced beads and costumes, it's almost hard to remember a mere week ago we were getting ready for the big day. Yet, now that the hangover's gone and the post-Carnival cold is working its way through, its worth looking at what happened with fresh eyes. On Mardi Gras Day, NoDef photographer Alexei Kazantsev was there to document the explosion of great costumes and boundless life. His photos (after the jump) are making us wish we were back there!

Fate Accompli

Special Event Permits & City Hall Sweeps Are Here to Stay, and Other Notes on Carnival 2011

CBD – In the three weeks since the bust of a Mardi Gras costume sale on Frenchmen St., officials in New Orleans City Hall have sought to clarify their position on the incident, and their general stance on permitting.

Frenchmen Finale?

An Editorial

Dear Reader, Humor your humble editors as we recount a scene of Mardi Gras Night.


Bass blared a distinct electronic thump-thump-thump. Scantily clad girls, and even more scantily clad boys danced atop cars. Beads flew. Your intrepid editor had to duck when the glow of lightsticks revealed a Solo cup of stale beer catapult forth from a pair of chubby hands. A glance towards our assailant revealed a plump visitor in a tee reading, “I Got Bourbon Faced on Shit Street.”


'That's a Lot of Beer'

In yet another Carnival crackdown, agents from the state Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control slapped about 650 citations on local underage drinkers and their suppliers during the final 2 1/2 weeks of the Mardi Gras season. Though they deal with that sort of thing for a living, agents were shocked while putting a sting on a NOLA frat party. They found 190 kegs of beer had already been put down. "That's a lot of beer," Alcohol and Tobacco Commissioner Troy Hebert told the AP. Doesn't he remember the good old days?

The Characters of Mardi Gras: A Photo Essay

During Carnival time, it's the floats, throws and groups with archaic names that set the table. But for many, the characters you can see just by walking down the street are enough entertainment by themselves. NoDef photographer Kat Arnold was out this weekend to capture the unique blend of creative spirit, limitless energy, and - since he always seems to be everywhere - Mayor Mitch. We're already looking forward to next year! Click through for a slideshow.

Mardi Gras, Goodnight

A Photo Expo of the Bourbon St Sweep

Ah yes, the time has come and gone- Mardi Gras 2011 was and saw many things, and now it has come to an end. The city morphs and changes throughout Fat Tuesday, from Zulu to Rex to St. Annes, to post-parade celebratin’ thanks to fragmented marching bands staggering through the Quarter and keeping the music alive. Each hour sees less and less party animals on the streets, as people fight to see Carnival to its last drop, yet drop like flies to their showers/couches/beds long before the Crescent clean-up.

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Renard Boissiere, Evan Z.E. Hammond, Naimonu James, Wilson Koewing, J.A. Lloyd, Nina Luckman, Dead Huey Long, Alexis Manrodt, Joseph Santiago, Andrew Smith, Cynthia Via, Austin Yde


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Linzi Falk

Editor Emeritus

Alexis Manrodt

B. E. Mintz

Stephen Babcock

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