Recreate Rio at Your Brazilian Themed Mardi Gras


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A fantasy festival in your own backyard

The two names synonymous with vibrant colors and extravagant décor – Rio and Mardi Gras. Both scream of beautiful scenery and grand events. And with the help of a dramatic chromatic blend, you can recreate Rio a Brazilian themed Mardi Gras.

The one thing that stands between you and a wild night of festivities is a highly decorated and colorful blend of blues, golds, purples, and greens vividly coloring every aspect of the event venue. Hosting an outdoor/backyard Brazilian themed Mardi Gras in the summer will graciously embrace the eroticism of Brazil and warmth of South America. But, that’s merely a suggestion. Any time you bring the excitement of Mardi Gras to a party, you know you’re in for a fun night.

Begin by setting the scene. Have guests enter the extravaganza by walking up under the archway of Brazilian romance. Outline the archway with alternating strings of metallic gold, purple, green and silver balloons and stringed globe lights. Line the entrance to your yard with metallic gossamer to create a grand Rio walkway.

Inside your yard, place small masquerade ball masks around your space or buffet table. Have Mardi Gras inspired tables set up for your guests to enjoy your Brazilian dinner spread. At each table setting, place a Mardi Gras sequin mask as a party favor for each of your guests. Adorn your tables with Mardi Gras confetti wildly spread about each table. Your backyard will make even artists envious as the beauty of the bold color combination come to life.

Light up your Rio themed Mardi Gras party

Light up your Rio themed Mardi Gras party

The Spread

Of course, what’s any good party without good food and good drinks? And what would Mardi Gras be without a buffet of delicious party favorites? Cocktail wieners, buffalo wings, shrimp Diablo, and buffalo chip dip will all add a little Latin spice to your party go-ers. But, to sweeten things up, decorate a candy buffet with purple and green jelly beans, gold coins, silver wrapped Hershey kisses, and green – purple – and white spiced gum drops. Intertwine strings of colorful party beads and lights around your candy dishware. Line your candy buffet with fabric bunting. And don’t forget a drink table or bar. Since Mardi Gras is all about eating and drinking, be sure to have plenty of both. Offer signature or specialty drinks – such as “party pina coladas” and “Mardi Gras martinis.” Give them fun names and use food coloring to add to the festive colors of the event.

Get the Word Out

Everyone knows that at a Mardi Gras party, the more the merrier. So, if you haven’t yet used or aren’t familiar with the Party Crashers app for any smart phone, you should learn… and quick! With the Party Crashers app, the way you party is revolutionized. Ditch the dated party days of hand writing party invitations, mailing them out, and hoping the invitations don’t get lost in the shuffle of your family and friend’s mail. With the Party Crashers app, you can simply set up a party event, add the details – like attire, music, drinks, date and time – and “send out” the invites with a scroll through your email and social networking lists. And for added fun, you can open the event up to the public, making it “crashable.” Sit back and watch just who shows up to crash the party. Friends, family, and party crashers everywhere have the ease of party locating in the simplicity of their smartphone app.

There ain't no party like an app crasher party

There ain’t no party like an app crasher party

Nothing says Mardi Gras like good food, good fun, and lots of people… so for your next backyard event, turn up the heat with a little Brazilian bash.

Top Five After-Prom Party Themes


Keep the After-Prom Party Going With a Theme!

Many schools create some sort of after-prom celebration for their students.  Some schools create an after-prom breakfast for their students, too.  If your school’s prom has a theme, the theme for your after-prom has to be completely different.  There are a wide variety of themes you could choose for your school’s after-prom party—everything from Casino Night to Mardi-Gras to Hollywood

The Top Five After-Prom Party Themes

  1. Casino Night After-Prom Party Theme: This is a great way to kick back and relax after a great prom.  You can set up a ton of tables and create a casino atmosphere with a wide variety of games (Texas Hold ‘Em, Blackjack, a roulette wheel, etc).  You can even work favors in—personalized poker chips are a great way for guests to remember not only their prom, but also their after-prom.  Also, as your guests enter their after-prom, hand out raffle tickets and create a few giveaways.
  2. Mardi-Gras After-Prom Party Theme:  Make your guests feel like they’re on Bourbon Street in New Orleans!  Use gold, green, and purple balloons in every corner and along the walls to help transform your after-prom party.  Hand out green, gold, and purple beads and feathered masks as favors; you can also use the raffle ticket idea for this after-prom party.  Blast jazz music and let your guests continue to dance the night away while they get a chance to experience a different culture—you can even serve Creole-based or Cajun food and let them try something new!  Your guests probably haven’t had much to eat since dinner before prom, so offer jambalaya, beignets, or a variety of other foods.
  3. Hollywood After-Prom Party Theme:  What better way to relax than with a fun movie night?  Send out film roll invitations ahead of time that your guests will turn in when they enter—then, as they enter, put each guest’s name into a raffle for giveaways before the movies start.  After they turn in their invitations, give each guest a bottle of water (with a personalized label), and a bag of popcorn as they enter your after-prom party.  Then, after all the guests have arrived, raffle off personalized candy jars and personalized cookie tins filled with movie snacks!  Finally, let your after-prom guests take pictures with Marilyn Monroe or Elvis Pressley standees—then give them Hollywood-themed picture frames when they leave!
  4. 1950’s Sock Hop After-Prom Party Theme: This is a great way for all your guests to get some fresh air after a stuffy indoor prom.  Light up your school’s parking lot and get a few grills fired up!  Blast some old 50’s rock and roll and let your guys show off their cars while all the girls gossip.  Cook burgers and hot dogs to serve with chips, pretzels, and root beer floats. 
  5. City After-Prom Party Theme: Set up little stations around your after-prom area to represent different clubs and different restaurants found throughout big cities—you could even make a few hot dog carts!  Put all this against a city backdrop or wall hanging and make your after-prom guests feel as though they’ve been transported!  At each different “club” station, create a different punch or juice combination for your after-prom guests to enjoy.  While most clubs have matchbooks as souvenirs, give your after-prom guests personalized mint tins and personalized lollipops.

Whatever you choose for your prom, there are many themes to choose from for your after-prom—you can either make it match your prom theme or you can make it a completely different theme! Whichever way you choose to go, remember to make your after-prom a fun way for your guests to relax and unwind after prom night.

Create a Mardi Gras Murder Mystery Dinner


Take your Mardi Gras soiree in a unique direction by adding a mysterious aspect to the evening. A Mardi Gras Murder Mystery Dinner is an event your friends will be talking about for years to come. A murder mystery dinner is both fun and interactive, so it keeps everyone involved in the Mardi Gras fun.

The first thing you’ll need is a theme. Shindigz carries a variety of Mardi Gras theme decorations that will set the scene for your mystery. The masquerade photo backdrop makes a  beautiful wall covering with its elegant mask photograph. It will look great in your party photos. Jazz musician standees and Bourbon Street lamps set the scene for a New Orleans themed party.

You’ll also need the plot and script for the murder mystery dinner. There are Mardi Gras-themed murder mystery scripts available online or you can get really creative and write your own. Check out these tips for writing your own murder mystery dinner.

Mardi Gras masks help add to the intrigue. Stock up on masks from our wide assortment of beautiful Mardi Gras masks and have guests choose a mask to match their character. The masks will be memorable favors.

Next, you’ll need tableware for the dinner part of the festivities. Cover the table with a solid purple, green, or gold tablecovers and add a shimmering tableskirt. We have solid and patterned Mardi Gras tableware just right for serving your decadent Mardi Gras food and minimizing clean up. Top the tables off with glittering Mardi Gras centerpieces such as our sequined carnival masks. Our Mardi Gras pulp board coasters make a cool custom addition to your bar area too. Check out our Mardi Gras food tips for ideas to plan your menu!

Finish the evening off with favors. Select a special favor for the guest who solves the mystery. A custom tin full of treats or a special gift certificate would be appropriate. Send everyone home with tons of beads or one of our custom Mardi Gras mint tins.

A murder mystery dinner is just one fantastic way to celebrate Fat Tuesday. Check out our other Mardi Gras tips for other ideas and shop all of our Mardi Gras party supplies.

The Ultimate Mardi Gras Cocktail Party


Mardi Gras Party Recipes and Ideas

The ultimate Mardi Gras cocktail party requires the ultimate selection of Mardi Gras cocktails and appetizers, served in an environment totally decked out in the ultimate Mardi Gras theme. Purple, green and gold are traditional background colors for this carnival of carnivals. However, Mardi Gras cocktail recipes tempt pallets with bourbon, rum and fruit juice, while popular appetizers are made with spicy, New Orleans essence.

Festive Mardi Gras Cocktail Party Recipes

Hurricane

Classic Mardi Gras Hurricanes are made with 1 part rum (equal portions of dark and light), 2 parts fruit juice (orange, pineapple and passion preferred), a dash of grenadine syrup and a hint of fresh lime juice in a cocktail shaker. Fill the shaker with ice, squeeze fresh lime juice over the top, add the rest of the ingredients and shake thoroughly. Pour hurricane cocktail into festive Fat Tuesday tableware cocktail glasses, garnished with an orange slice and topped with a cherry to serve.

Tiger Paw

Mix equal parts Southern Comfort, pineapple juice and raspberry wine over a shaker filled with ice. Strain cocktail into a martini glass garnished with fruit and serve on personalized Mardi Gras coasters.

New Orleans Hand Grenade

Mix equal parts gin, grain alcohol, melon liquor, rum and vodka over ice. Add water and sugar to taste and stir well. Guests drinking these powerful cocktails are likely to enjoy wearing festive Mardi Gras glitter masks, and lots of Mardi Gras beads, celebrating the true spirit of Mardi Gras well into the evening.

Easy Crabmeat Spread

 Combine 6 ounces of flaky crabmeat (fresh or canned) with 8 ounces of soft cream cheese and ¼ Cup salsa. Heat mixture in microwave for 1 to 2 minutes, until warm, but not hot. Serve with an assortment of crackers.

Golden Triangles

 12 sheets frozen phyllo dough

½ cup melted butter

Cajun Pork Filling

Apricot Dipping Sauce (optional)

Lightly brush one sheet of phyllo dough with some melted butter. Place another sheet on top of first sheet and brush with butter. Cover remaining phyllo dough and set aside. Cut buttered phyllo dough into six equal, horizontal strips. Place 1 tablespoon Cajun pork filling approximately 1 inch from end of strip. Fold one corner over, diagonally, lining it up with edge of strip to create triangle. Continue folding up the strip, until phyllo dough has many layers and is a single triangle appetizer. Repeat for remaining strips. Use rest of phyllo dough to make many more appetizers. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit, for approximately 10 minutes, until golden brown. Serve with Apricot Dipping Sauce if desired.

Cajun Pork Filling

Thoroughly cook 8 ounces ground pork in a medium skillet. Add 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning and cook for another minute. Stir in ½ Cup soft cream cheese, 1/3 Cup grated carrot and a few dashes hot pepper sauce to taste. Mix well.

Apricot Dipping Sauce

Combine ½ Cup apricot preserves and 1 Tablespoon hoisin sauce in a 1-Cup glass measuring cup. Stir in 1 Tablespoon thinly sliced green onion and ½ teaspoon finely grated orange peel. Microwave on high for approximately 1 minute, until bubbly and warm.

Mardi Gras and Masquerade Ideas for Your Classroom


Mardi Gras is just around the corner and if you study different holidays or the settlement of the United States, it’s the perfect reason to have a mini Mardi Gras celebration. You may also have a Mardi Gras celebration if you’ve been teaching your students French. (Mardi Gras means Fat Tuesday in English.)

Discuss the following leading up to your celebration:
• French settlement of New Orleans after the Civil War.
• Mardi Gras as a celebration of the “new year”
• First Mardi Gras celebration
• Today’s traditions: parties, multiple parades, etc.

When you have everything established and everyone has a good background for the “holiday”, kick back and celebrate!

For the perfect Mardi Gras classroom celebration, try the following:
• Order Mardi Gras masks for each of your students or have them create their own and hold a secret vote as to whose is the best.
• Use Mardi Gras decorations like the mystique mask door curtain and mask danglers to decorate your room.
• Purchase Mardi Gras favors for each student to take home and remember their celebration.
• Add a Jester standee as a photo booth that will make fine keepsakes for your students.
• You may even be adventurous and have groups of students make their own mini floats and hold a parade in your school.
• Don’t break the bank for your celebration. Shindigz has discount Mardi Gras supplies from which to choose.
• Let your students help you out with the food. They could research traditional French, Mardi Gras, or New Orleans food and each bring a dish to share with the class.

Even if you can’t tie in Mardi Gras to your Social Studies units, think about using Mardi Gras supplies for a masquerade ball or for a piece of literature such as The Phantom of the Opera. It’s always best to put yourself in your students’ shoes and think about what they want out of their studies. Reward their hard work on a literature unit with a theme party or have them put on a Reader’s Theatre for the novel you’ve read. Feather masks are perfect for the girls, and metallic masks work well for the boys.

No matter the reason to celebrate, your students are sure to have a blast with Mardi Gras!

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