Krewe of Barkus

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The Mystic Krewe of Barkus is a New Orleans Mardi Gras parade where participants are dogs costumed according to a central parade theme. The annual event is organized by the Krewe of Barkus, a nonprofit organization that promotes adoption and rescue of homeless animals in New Orleans.[1] The Mystic Krewe of Barkus makes fun of the more traditional New Orleans Mardi Gras parades[2][3] and is the only Mardi Gras "krewe" in New Orleans created for dogs.[1]


The Mystic Krewe of Barkus traces its history to a November 1992 meeting of the Margaret Orr fan club.[4] Orr is a meteorologist for New Orleans television station WDSU and regularly participates in the event as a Mistress of Ceremonies. The parade evolved from a bar prank, as a member of the club hatched the idea for a canine-centered "krewe" and it took hold. The Krewe was granted official parading status by the city of New Orleans in 1994.

The Krewe is reigned over by a canine King and Queen. The King traditionally is a purebred,[2] however, only dogs that once were homeless are eligible to be crowned Queen.[3] Membership in the Krewe of Barkus has grown over the years and now is limited by the city to 1,500 dog participants each year.[3] Registration fees for members are donated to several animal welfare groups,[2] including local chapters of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Throughout the years, the annual event has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars for dog-related nonprofits.[5]

The theme of the first Krewe of Barkus Parade was "Welcome to the Flea Market." Other themes have included: "Jurassic Bark"; "2001: A Dog Odyssey"; "Tailtanic: Dogs and Children First"; "Joan of Bark" and "007: From Barkus with Love".[4] Local New Orleanian Matt Rinard is the official artist for the Krewe of Barkus since 1998.


  1. ^ a b CityBusiness Staff Report (Feb 16, 2016). "New orleans krewe of barkus parade help promote adoption/rescue of homeless". New Orleans CityBusiness.
  2. ^ a b c Sack, Kevin (Feb 8, 1999). "Primped Dogs Take to Winding Streets for a Cause". New York Times, Late Edition (East Coast).
  3. ^ a b c Carpentieri, J D (Feb 16, 2002). "Weekend: Spirit: Pets: DOGS ON PARADE: The streets of New Orleans are packed with party". The Guardian.
  4. ^ a b "The Mystic Krewe of Barkus". Retrieved 25 March 2014.
  5. ^ Lawton, Dan (Feb 27, 2014). "Rain doesn't stop canine creativity at Barkus parade". The New Orleans Advocate. Retrieved 25 March 2014.

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