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Where law professors reign as Carnival royalty: Loyola revives 'Mardi Law'

Loyola press release - February 17, 2014

During Mardi Gras in 1977, a group of Loyola University New Orleans College of Law students halfway through an academic year of hitting the books decided to blow off some steam and throw their own Mardi Gras party. Complete with a king and queen, costumes and “floats,” the first “Mardi Law” was ruled a success. This year, the College of Law will revive that tradition Friday, Feb. 21 in honor of its centennial celebration.

The Student Bar Association will host the 2014 Centennial Mardi Law Celebration from 3 to 6 p.m. outside the College of Law on the Broadway campus. College of Law alumni, family and friends are invited to take part in this free event, which will include the crowning of the faculty king and queen, a student organization parade on Pine St., and a block party with complimentary jambalaya, king cake, drinks and more. All attendees will receive a complimentary centennial cup. The library on the first floor of the College of Law will also be open to tours of a new display of memorabilia, including photos and articles from past parades, in addition to one of the gowns worn by a faculty queen.

College of Law faculty were honored as king and queen in the 1990s, including professors Keith Vetter, Leslie Shoebotham, James Klebba, Mitch Crusto and Mary Algero, who served as queen in 1995. The king and queen would often salute their court and read their proclamation from the second floor balcony of the College of Law on Pine Street.

“I loved our law school Mardi Gras celebrations and parades. Each class level elected a duke and maid, and students selected the king and queen from the faculty. The court and friends threw beads down to the gathered crowd while Mardi Gras music played. At some point, everyone lined up in parade fashion and marched as a parade through the streets around the law school,” Algero said.

“Often a group of students carried a banner at the front of the procession announcing who we were. The court was transported in high style on a hay wagon pulled by a pick-up truck. The event was just plain fun because it drew the law school community together around an event that could only happen here in the city of New Orleans.”

For more information, contact Jennifer Jumonville at 504-861-5741.

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