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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Residence life celebrates Mardi Gras


Courtesy of Samslens

Mardi Gras, a celebration that occurs prior to Lent, begins today. The holiday is being celebrated by students at the Árbol de la Vida Residence Hall, and the event will consist of music, fortune-tellers and other activities.

Árbol de la Vida Residence Hall brings the festivities of a traditional New Orleans’ Mardi Gras from Bourbon Street to the UA with its fourth annual Carnivida on Feb. 28 from 8 p.m. to midnight.

The celebration also serves as the one campuswide program required yearly from each residence hall. The events purpose is to resemble and reenact the traditions of Mardi Gras.

Mardi Gras beads will be handed out at the event and lights will be hung in the courtyard of Árbol de la Vida.

“The decorations are usually lights,” said Aishwarya Karlapudi, a pre-physiology freshman and member of Árbol de la Vida’s hall council.

Roma Imports, an Italian food service, will provide the event with pizza. Gluten-free alternatives will be among the many varieties of food available. The main food event will be the King’s Cake, a Mardi Gras tradition where everyone is given a piece of cake, and whoever has a small baby figure in their piece wins.

Members of the Pride of Arizona marching band will parade from Yuma Residence Hall to Árbol de la Vida dressed in their uniforms while playing pep tunes, as marching bands do in New Orleans on Mardi Gras.

“I have a friend who is in marching band,” said Michael Woodson, resident assistant council co-adviser. “She is going to be parading with the marching band from Yuma [Residence] Hall to Árbol de la Vida.”

Participants can also expect face painting, mask making — which will be part of a social justice workshop on the masks people hide behind — character artists, henna tattoo artists, flip books where participants draw the images, fortune-tellers and a balloon artist.

“I think that the program is a lot of fun,” said Stephen Merchant, a chemistry senior who was at Carna Vita before. “Last year, we had fire dancers.”

Music will be provided by a disc jockey who will play music in-between each performance and student a cappella groups accompanied by performances from the campus magic club and Charles Darwin Experience comedy improv group.

The event is for students from every hall and attracted 600 people the previous year.

“We are aiming for higher than 600 this year,” Woodson said. “There’s a community behind our college here.”


Follow Preston Brooks on Twitter.

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