GCCA: ‘It’s all on the line’ this year

As Captain of Carnival this year, David Machado is the person responsible for making sure all goes well with Gulf Coast Carnival, from the most minute detail of the planning months ago to the final throw from the final float at this year’s parade.

One question Carnival organizers as well as paradegoers want to know is will the roads be paved for the 1 p.m. parade.

“The pretty hot topic, of course, has been the infrastructure work,” Machado said. “We have a great working relationship with the City of Biloxi, and we’re confident all the roads will be ready for the parade, especially Porter and Howard.

“We do ask people to arrive early and be mindful of the construction that may be nearby. Work with the police and first responders.”

According to Jack Gratwich of Hemphill Construction Co., the contractors responsible for the infrastructure work south of the railway, all of the route will be paved, even if it’s some temporary paving on Howard just east of Porter. For roads near the parade route, Azalea Drive, Benachi Avenue and Howard between Reynoir and Main will be closed.

North of the railway, Benachi Avenue, Main Street, and Esters Boulevard from Main to Lee will be closed.

As for the traffic plan, it should be nothing new to longtime paradegoers. 

Beginning at 11 a.m., U.S. 90 will be reduced to two-way traffic from Porter Avenue to Main Street and at noon, I-110 will be closed to southbound traffic at Division Street.

OK, but what about the parade?

Says the captain: “We’ll have more than a hundred floats, which is a little larger than normal. And ‘It’s all on the line’ this year. It’s a celebration of first responders, the pursuit of Olympic goals, the World Series of Poker, high-flying acrobats, and generally things that have a high risk and high reward.

“Come March 5, we’re putting it on the line, and we’re going to have great weather and everyone’s going to have a great time.”
See the GCCA parade route
See the Mardi Gras traffic plan
See images from the Neptune parade


News & notes: Weekly report, weather, shelters, city office closures, B-Alert

The week that was:  If you want to get behind-the-scenes details on last week’s activity from the Biloxi Fire, Police and Community Development departments or look over a report from the city’s Engineering Department on the status major projects, check out our weekly review.  To see the reports, click here.   

Chilly Mardi Gras: Forecasters are predicting sunny weather with a high near 52 and a North wind of 15 mph on Fat Tuesday. Paradegoers should dress comfortable and layer clothing.  To see the complete forecast, click here.

Cold weather shelters:  With a freeze warning in effect from 9 p.m. to 9 a.m., the following cold weather shelters will be open: The Salvation Army Cold Weather Shelter, 2019 22nd St. in Gulfport, is open today and will open on Tuesday at 4 p.m.; and the Fournier Multi-Purpose Building, 10395 Automall Parkway Blvd. in D’iberville, opens Tuesday at 5 p.m. with bus pick up at Seashore Mission beginning at 4 p.m.  Anyone needing a ride to a shelter should call the Biloxi Police Department at 228-392-0641. 

Mardi Gras office closures: All non-emergency municipal offices in Biloxi will be closed on Tuesday, March 5 in observance of Mardi Gras.

B-Alert: Stay in the know about road closures, road re-openings, and other traffic advisories by signing up for B-Alert.  It’s a real-time, on-the-go messaging system that brings advisories directly to your cell phone.  Just text BILOXI to 888777.