Live music, a parade and colourful bunting bring Mardi Gras to Thorpe Park...
Mardi Gras is traditionally celebrated with carnivals, parades, rich foods and colourful costumes in places such as New Orleans,
Dakar and Venice. It culminates with a celebration the day before Ash Wednesday (more commonly known as Shove Tuesday or Pancake Day in the UK) coming six weeks before Easter.
Not that the date has stopped Merlin bringing the festivities to Thorpe Park in a new event for the 2022 season running from 19th May to 19th June!
But who could argue with taking a visit to the park with some of the family, together with warm sunshine and extended opening hours from 10am to 7pm?
It has to be done, but the massive security tent really isn't the nicest welcome to the park
The new actor-led preshow does its best to explain the overall storyline but it is still not particularly clear, and increasing numbers of VR headsets are glitching or outright broken which ruins the experience
Mardi Gras stilt walkers
Waffles!?! Did somebody say waffles?
Zodiac may be looking increasingly old and creaky, but it is still giving fun rides
Close on 7pm, it was time to wave goodbye to our day at Thorpe Park's Mardi Gras celebrations
Overall we had an awesome day in the sunshine, benefitting from a reasonably quiet park and managing to get on almost all of the major rides.
The Swarm in particular was running really well, and Saw was especially smooth today. Nemesis Inferno was shuffling a little from side-to-side,
but it is still an awesome ride. And of course, just spending time with family having fun is always brilliant!
A year of special events
The Mardi Gras event itself was a little disappointing: there wasn't enough going on to really feel enveloped in what should have been the carnival atmosphere.
While it was nice to see some coloured bunting hung up, it felt a bit lacklustre. We spotted a few musicians but the event stages were often empty, and in general
it was easy to miss most of the added entertainment laid on for the event. The "Parade" consisted of a couple of floats and a few characters walking along:
a half-arsed attempt at a spectacle which was just embarrassing. An enticing early season event at Thorpe would be amazing, but at the moment while the
foundation has been laid (well at least it has a nice logo), Mardi Gras needs a lot of work if it is going to become an annual Spring must-do. Let's just hope
the rest of this year's event lineup is better!