The first step in scheduling a Mardi Gras party is determining the actual date of the holiday, which is always 46 days before Easter. The last step is deciding whether to set the party for Mardi Gras day or an earlier date. Parties are usually not scheduled after Mardi Gras because that time is part of the Lenten season, when Catholics observe fasting and repentance.
Party planners have a lot of flexibility when scheduling Mardi Gras parties because the holiday is part of the Carnival season. Also known as Fat Tuesday, Mardi Gras is the last day of Carnival and the day before Ash Wednesday. Carnival Season begins on the sixth of January every year. That date is known as Kings’ Day or Twelfth Night because it occurs 12 days after Christmas when the wise men reached Bethlehem. Jan. 6 is also known as The Feast of the Epiphany.
Another consideration in scheduling a Mardi Gras party is other celebrations. Cities celebrating Carnival have multiple parades for several weeks leading up to Fat Tuesday. Carnival organizations known as krewes host formal and costume balls to celebrate the season. If not scheduled with this in mind, party planners may have trouble getting people to their event because there are so many parties to choose from.