Platinum Club Visits Shreveport, LA

February is Mardi Gras time, and 47 travelers with the Peoples Bank Platinum Club celebrated the season with a special Saturday day trip to the Mardi Gras Bash in Shreveport, La., on Feb. 22.

The Bash is an enhanced Mardi Gras event sponsored each year by the Shreveport Chamber of Commerce for large travel groups. 

Platinum Club members and guests were invited to a buffet lunch of Cajun foods under a dining tent on the parade route.  They enjoyed such specialties as crawfish “A-2-Fay,” fried catfish, meat pies, meatballs, red beans and rice, and a chicken and sausage gumbo.  The array of desserts included the iconic King Cake.

A Cajun band played for dancing under the tent with demonstrations by a Cajun dance group, and  several Platinum Club travelers accepted the invitation to kick up their heels.

After lunch, special eight-passenger trams whisked guests through downtown Shreveport and along the avenue that stretches along the Red River for an up close view of the Mardi Gras float line-up.

Saturday’s parade was presented by the Krewe of Centaur.  It is the largest Mardi Gras parade in the Ark-La-Tex area.  Forty floats, several marching bands and other units paraded before a record crowd of spectators for two hours through picture-perfect weather.

Platinum Club members had seats in a special roped-off section, but there was little sitting as float “throwers” began flinging beads, plastic cups, mini footballs, T-shirts and even mini Moon Pies into the crowd. 

When spectators weren’t grabbing for treasure, they were tapping their toes and gyrating to the lively music - Cajun, pop, rock and country - emanating from the passing floats, some of which carried whole live bands.

It was truly a day of “laissez les bons temps rouler” for the Platinum travelers from Simpson, Rankin, Covington, Smith and Jeff Davis counties!

Krewe of Centaur was organized in 1991 and proclaim themselves “bound together by the common goals of building a better community and the pursuit of good family fun.”

“The good community and the family fun were certainly in evidence at this event,”said Platinum Club director Oliver McLean.  “We saw no drinking or misbehavior at all, none of the things you sometimes associate with Mardi Gras parades in other places.  This was a fun  event we could all enjoy.”

The group was accompanied by Peoples Bank Platinum Club directors Oliver and Donna McLean.  The trip was coordinated by Lance Clay of Trek Travel.

The next Platinum Club day trip is set for March 20, when the group will head for Natchez for the annual Pilgrimage.  For information, call Peoples Bank in Magee at 601-849-2210 and ask for Oliver McLean or Debbie Walker.