Wake Forest Mardi Gras

2018 Wake Forest Mardi Gras
Saturday, Feb. 10 ~ 11 am
South White Street, Downtown Wake Forest

Join us for a fun-filled day in downtown Wake Forest on Saturday, Feb. 10, during the Wake Forest Mardi Gras Street Festival presented by Gladwell Orthodontics and Primrose School of Heritage Wake Forest. This family-friendly celebration is scheduled from 11 a.m.to 3 p.m. and admission is free.

The Wake Forest Mardi Gras Street Festival invites area residents to visit the heart of Wake Forest and experience all our downtown has to offer. The event will offer a variety of fun things to do, including a walking parade, children's activities, and assorted contests for people of all ages. Several downtown merchants and event sponsors will also offer special discounts and activities throughout the day.  

Street Festival  
The Mardi Gras Street Festival will feature music, entertainment, face painting and a walking parade for children and adults. In addition, downtown merchants and several event sponsors will offer exceptional discounts and activities throughout the day. There will also be a variety of food trucks in the Fidelity Bank parking lot, 231 S. White St., plus fun and exciting contests for the young and young at heart!

Walking Parade
One of the day’s highlights promises to be the Mardi Gras Walking Parade. The lineup will begin at 12:45 p.m. in town hall’s Centennial Plaza, 301 S. Brooks St., and the parade gets underway at 1 p.m. The parade route will extend from town hall, up East Owen Avenue, and north along South White Street before ending at the Depot Parking Lot, 110 S. White St. 

The walking parade is open to both children and adults. No pre-registration is required; however, all children must be accompanied by an adult or guardian. Youngsters are invited to walk, roller skate, ride their bicycles or be pulled along in a wagon. Participation is free, but bicyclists must wear their helmets.

Parade participants are encouraged to flex their creative muscles by decorating their bicycles and wagons, dressing up in their best Mardi Gras garb and wearing a mask. Awards will be presented for “Best Decorated Vehicle (wagon, cart, bicycle or stroller),” “Best Baby,” and “Most Festive Family.” Judges will also select a "King & Queen" and "Prince & Princess" for the best costumes. The "King & Queen" and "Prince & Princess" costume contest winners will join our presenting sponsors, Primrose School of Heritage Wake Forest and Gladwell Orthodontics to lead the walking parade. 

Children's Activities
Free face painting will be offered in the town hall lobby and on South White Street in front of the Depot Parking Lot.

Feeling creative? Children can make a necklace in the town hall lobby. The activity is offered by Wake Forest ARTS. Then make sure to leave your mark by participating in sidewalk chart art in front of the Depot Parking Lot.  

Got a lot of energy?  Free bounce houses will be open in the Depot Parking Lot, 110 S. White St. Kids (and kids at heart) can learn how to hula-hoop at the Hoop Jam in Centennial Plaza. There will also be a mini aerial rig for kids who want to test their skills in Centennial Plaza.

Just want to see the sights? Roaming acrobats, a juggler, a balloon twister, and other street entertainers will provide plenty of entertainment throughout the day.

Teenagers and adults are invited to participate in the King & Queen Costume Contest prior to the start of the walking parade. The costume judging will take place at noon in the vicinity of the Centennial Plaza flagpoles. The winners will serve as the parade’s grand marshals and join our presenting sponsors in leading the walking parade.

A Prince & Princess Costume Contest will also be offered for younger participants. Anyone wishing to enter the contest should gather at the Centennial Plaza flagpoles at noon.

Contests for Best Baby, Best Decorated Vehicle (wagon, cart, bicycle or stroller) and Most Festive Family will be held at 12:30 pm in front of the flagpoles in Centennial Plaza. Anyone may enter.

The always-popular Bubblegum Blowing Contest (youth and adult winner for biggest bubblegum bubble) will take place at 2 pm in Jones Plaza (corner of S. White Street and Jones Avenue). 

A special Thank you to all our sponsors for their support of the 2018 Wake Forest Mardi Gras Festival presented by Primrose School of Heritage Wake Forest and Gladwell Orthodontics. Our sponsors include: Champion Windows, Sunrooms & Home Exteriors; The Dental Care Center;  All American Gutter ProtectionMr. Roof of Raleigh, Stanley Martin HomesPassanante’s Home Food ServicesLeafFilter, Wake Forest Urgent Care, Luxury Bath & KitchensWake Forest ARTS and Lowes Foods.  

Interested in sponsoring town events? Fill out our Sponsorship Interest Form for more information.  








Downtown Merchant Specials  
Several participating downtown merchants will offer special discounts and activities – many with a Mardi Gras theme - throughout the day. 

Food Trucks 
2018 Mardi Gras Street Festival featured a variety of food and dessert trucks in the Fidelity Bank parking lot, 231 S. White Street. Participating food trucks included the following:

  • Bourbon Street Beignets

  • Bam, Pow, Chow

  • Baton Rouge Cuisine

  • Charlie’s Kabobs

  • Lumpy’s Ice Cream

Mardi Gras App  
Android and iPhone users can have a handy pocket guide to this year’s Mardi Gras celebration in the palm of their hands by downloading the Town of Wake Forest app and using the app’s "Mardi Gras" function. Designed to provide smart phone users with useful information about all of the 2018 Wake Forest Mardi Gras festivities, the function offers instant access to the day’s schedule of events, downtown merchant specials, volunteer opportunities and more. 

IPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, and Android users can download the town’s free app by searching for “Town of Wake Forest" on iTunes, in the iPhone app store or in Google Play or by scanning the appropriate QR code provided at www.wakeforestnc.gov/app.aspx

To receive email notifications concerning special events in Wake Forest, sign up for E-Notifier.