Mardi Gras is a weeklong party celebrated in many parts of the world, such as Rio de Janeiro, Paris and New Orleans. The holiday we see today is a combination of Colonial French Catholic and Caribbean carnivals. Its carnival aspects are parades and street parties. Feasting and drinking were activities the Colonial French brought to the New World with their colonies along the Gulf Coast. However it started, the Mardi Gras party continues.
The little cellophane-wrapped marshmallow creme pies are a staple of Mardi Gras. Besides the King Cake, these are favorite sweet treats of parade goers everywhere. You need a tiered cake stand and a variety of MoonPies for this centerpiece. Don't forget the parade beads of green, gold and purple. Also grab a few sheets of Mardi Gras-colored foil sheets.
Place your cake stand in the center of the table. Cut the foil sheeting to lie across the tiers with about a 2-inch overhang on each side. Stuff the marshmallow pies on top of the aluminum foil in each layer. Add some beads to each tier and you've got an edible display in no time.
Mardi Gras masks give this holiday a mystical party feel. For this idea, you need at least four Mardi Gras masks of varying sizes. You also need bamboo skewers and a hot glue gun. For the base, use a favorite imitation potted plant. Place the potted plant in the middle of the table. Tuck in the masks throughout the arrangement to make a Mardi Gras mask centerpiece. Spray paint the bamboo skewers purple, gold or green in a well-ventilated outdoor area. After they dry, use your hot glue gun to attach one skewer to each mask. It's best to glue half the masks on the left side and the other half on the right. Tuck the skewers into the potted plant.
It's tradition in the U.S. South to keep your artificial Christmas tree up to redecorate it for Mardi Gras. Take this concept to your dining room table. You need a small 18-inch Christmas tree, some Mardi Gras-colored battery-operated lights and decorations. Place a fabric runner in a Mardi Gras color on your table to protect it. Put the tree in the center of the table and wrap the lights around the tree. Check the batteries to see if they are working properly. Add some festive Mardi Gras decorations such as little jazz instruments or some fleur-de-lis ornaments. You could also hang some plastic crawfish and parade beads to add some Cajun flavor to your tree. Top it off with a small jester's hat or mask.