Seventh annual Run for the Beads

With the first Mardi Gras parade just under two weeks away, Coast residents are trying to find ways to get into the carnival spirit.

Battling the cold and fog, participants showed up to Biloxi City Hall bright and early to participate in the Run for Beads one mile fun run and 5K. The annual 5K helps raise money for the Gulf Coast Carnival Association’s parade. Run for the Beads Chairman Brent Fairley said, “This is the seventh year for the event. What it does is raise money for the carnival association in general, which the carnival association in conjunction with the city and other community leaders puts on the parade every year.”

The Gulf Coast Carnival Association has been on the Coast since 1908 when they held the first parade in Biloxi which featured 17 floats. The parade continues to go strong, drawing large crowds in the process. “The parade has probably 80,000 to 100,000 people that attend it. It’s the largest one on the Coast. We are the largest and oldest carnival association that’s on the Coast. This is our 111th year and we probably have about 100 to 120 floats in the parade every year,” said Fairley.

A 5K isn’t a prototypical Mardi Gras event, but with the music, food, and atmosphere, the Gulf Coast Carnival Association is trying to get people in the Mardi Gras spirit. GCCA Parade Duke David Nuemann said, “This is a good way to kick off the carnival season. We had Twelfth Night a couple of weeks ago and this is really the second event, just a good race, good to get out, and good for the community.”

The Gulf Coast Carnival Association’s parade will get started on Fat Tuesday around 1 p.m.

Categories: Featured, Harrison County, Local News, News

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