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Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership GRCC
Galveston County
City of Galveston
News Release
Thursday, February 01, 2018

Celebrate Mardi Gras! Galveston February 2nd through the 13th 
Please Note City Street Closures, Guidelines, and Safety Information

GALVESTON, Texas – The Island’s 107th Mardi Gras celebration, to be held February 2 – 13, 2018, is expected to draw more than 300,000 attendees for 30+ concerts, 22 parades, 20 balcony parties and five elegant masked balls. And, this island-style Mardi Gras has plenty of personality. From the classic revelry found in the heart of Galveston’s historic downtown district, where the bulk of festivities take place, to electronic dance parties and family friendly events and parades, Mardi Gras! Galveston offers excitement everyone can enjoy.

To purchase tickets, view the concert schedule, confirm parade routes and times, or become a vendor, please visit the official Mardi Gras! Galveston website at http://www.mardigrasgalveston.com/.

Please anticipate traffic delays and give yourself plenty of time to reach parade routes. If your destination is the Uptown Entertainment District, the City recommends the use of Harborside Drive to access the district.  Planning to stay overnight?  Be sure to inquire about free shuttles offered from select hotels to the elaborate festivities!  Please note the following street closures, guidelines, and public safety information to help ensure a great time at this year’s Mardi Gras! Galveston:

First Weekend – Street Closures

Uptown Entertainment District:

Prior to the weekend, No Parking signs will be placed downtown alerting the public about upcoming street closures.  Beginning on Thursday, February 1st at 5 PM, 21st, 22nd, 23rd, 24th, 25th, and 26th Streets between Harborside & Strand and Strand & Mechanic, will close to allow for event staging and load-in.  Crews will close all remaining streets in the early afternoon on Friday and by 2 PM, the area from Harborside to Mechanic, 20th to 25th Streets, including 25th Street, Market to New Strand, will be open to pedestrian traffic only.  25th Street from Market to Harborside will be closed as a part of the event area.  Streets will re-open no later than 11:45 PM on Sunday, February 4th.

Seawall Parade Routes: Saturday, February 3rd  

Parades are scheduled to begin at noon on Saturday, February 3rd.  Access streets leading to Seawall between 23rd and 61st Streets will be barricaded from 10:30 AM to as late as 10 PM that night.  Vehicles will be directed westbound away from the parades.

  • East and west-bound traffic will be closed on Seawall Blvd. between 59th and 23rd Streets from 10 AM to 11 PM; access streets leading to Seawall will be barricaded in that area.
  • Additionally, 25th Street from Seawall Blvd. to Market will be closed from 10 AM to 11 PM to safely allow for the night parade. 
  • Broadway, Avenue O, Avenue P, and Harborside will remain open for cross traffic except during parade events.

Second Weekend – Street Closures

Uptown Entertainment District:

Prior to the weekend No Parking signs will be placed downtown alerting the public about upcoming street closures.  Beginning Thursday, February 8th, at 5 PM, 21st, 22nd, 23rd, 24th, 25th, and 26th Streets between Harborside & Strand and Strand & Mechanic, will close to allow for event staging and load-in.  Crews will close all remaining streets in the early afternoon on Friday and by 2 PM the area from Harborside to Mechanic, 20th to 25th Streets, including 25th Street, Market to New Strand, will be open to pedestrian traffic only.  25th Street from Market to Harborside will be closed as a part of the event area.  Streets will re-open no later than 11:45 PM on Sunday, February 11th.

Seawall Parade Routes: Saturday, February 10th:

To accommodate several parades, street closures along Seawall will begin at 8:30 AM on Saturday, February 10th.  Please note the following traffic schedule:

  • East and west-bound traffic will be closed on Seawall Blvd. between 25th and 33rd Streets from 10 AM to 2 PM; access streets leading to Seawall will be barricaded in that area.
  • East and west-bound traffic will be closed on Seawall Blvd. between 19th and 27th Streets from 2 PM to 10 PM; access streets leading to Seawall will be barricaded in that area.
  • Additionally, 25th Street from Seawall Blvd. to Market will be closed from 3 PM to 10 PM to safely allow for the night parade. 
  • Broadway, Avenue O, Avenue P, and Harborside will remain open for cross traffic except during parade events.

Fat Tuesday – Street Closures:

On Tuesday, February 13th, crews will close streets inside the Uptown Entertainment District at 5:30 PM in anticipation of the Fat Tuesday Parade.  The area including Harborside to Church, 18th to 26th Streets will be closed for the festivities.  All streets will re-open no later than 11 PM.

Glass Containers Prohibited:

Per City ordinance, all glass beverage containers are strictly prohibited within the Mardi Gras Entertainment District.  Please note that these ordinances apply in City rights-of-way which include all sidewalks within the Mardi Gras Entertainment District. 

Per City ordinance, all glass beverage containers are strictly prohibited along Seawall Boulevard in its entirety including sidewalks.  Please note that this prohibition is effective at all times along Seawall Boulevard including during Mardi Gras and other special events.

Outdoor Cooking & Fire Safety:

Please remember open fires are strictly prohibited.  All cooking fires must be within a pit or device specifically designed for cooking and a working fire extinguisher appropriate for the cooking source must be on-site at all times.  Remember to keep children, animals, and flammable materials a safe distance from the cooking area to prevent burn injuries and fires.

Seawall Parking:

City leaders voted on Thursday January 25th to allow limited overnight parking along Galveston’s Seawall Boulevard during the first weekend of Mardi Gras! Galveston 2018.  The public will be able to park their properly registered vehicles and trailers beginning at 5 AM Friday, February 2nd, 2018.  All vehicles and trailers must be removed on Sunday, February 4th, 2018.  Drivers parking along the roadway in advance of Friday will be cited or towed for violating the City’s No Parking from 3:00 AM – 5:00 AM regulation.

Paid parking along Seawall Boulevard will be in effect during Mardi Gras! Galveston 2018. Parking will be enforced per licensed vehicle; vehicles and trailers parked along Seawall Boulevard must display a license plate and pay for parking between the hours of 10 AM and 6 PM DAILY.

Available parking spots along Seawall are likely to fill up rapidly in anticipation of first weekend parades!  The Galveston Police Department reminds residents and visitors to please remember:

  • Do not try to cover space with anything other than a properly registered vehicle or trailer
  • Cones, chairs, ropes, chains and the like will be removed at the owners’ expense
  • Please keep Seawall sidewalk pathways clear of any obstacles to allow free access to pedestrian traffic

There will be a number of areas along the Seawall designated as no parking zones or restricted access areas.  The City reminds all revelers to please take note of these areas when parking their vehicles.

Public Safety:

Maintaining public safety throughout the Mardi Gras! celebration is a priority for the City of Galveston.  Be mindful that event areas will be crowded and offer opportunities for those who might be inclined to indulge in criminal behavior.  Exercise common sense to reduce your vulnerability to crime.  General safety suggestions include:

  • Stay aware of your surroundings
  • Exercise caution
  • Keep track of personal belongings
  • If you see something, say something – if you see any suspicious behavior, please find a law enforcement officer and make them aware.

The Galveston Police Department will operate a Mobile Command Station transit terminal located at 25th and Strand for the duration of the weekend.  For emergencies, please dial 9-1-1.  For non-emergencies, please call police dispatch at (409) 765-3702.  The City of Galveston Office of Emergency Management will open its Emergency Operations Center (EOC) for the event this year on Saturday February 3rd and the 10th from 2:00pm until 2:00am. 

Have additional questions about this year’s festivities?  Please visit http://www.mardigrasgalveston.com.  To help ensure a quick pass through the gate to enjoy the celebrations, please view the list of items prohibited in the Uptown Entertainment District at http://www.mardigrasgalveston.com/faqs.asp.

Trolley & Shuttle Information:

The Galveston Trolley’s will run their normal routes and schedules for the length of Mardi Gras! with the following adjustments made to accommodate one of the City’s largest special events. The following information outlines the changes to the normal trolley routes between February 2nd through February 13th, 2018:

  • There will be no trolley service on either Saturday during Mardi Gras! 2018 due to the closures needed to accommodate the Seawall parades.
  • There will be an adjusted route that runs along the rim of the event area downtown used on both Friday’s and Sunday’s.
  • Downtown Trolley service will end just prior to the final parade on Fat Tuesday, February 13th.
  • Trolley routes may be adjusted and/or canceled due to deteriorating traffic conditions during the high traffic periods of the celebrations. These announcements will be posted on the City’s social media as well as on the City’s website.

This information, as well as information about shuttles being provided by the City’s Convention and Visitors Bureau to and from certain hotels, is all available on our website at www.galvestontrolley.com.




Oktoberfest
Remembering Jim Guidry Mihovil for Navigation District


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