Mardi Gras is here! The city is bound to be buzzing, so celebrate with style in Indy at these six colorful events:

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Taste test at the Market Gras Gumbo Cook-Off

It’s back! Bring your family to the Indianapolis City Market on Fat Tuesday for the annual Gumbo Cook-Off. This event brings together some of Indy’s best chefs to share their gumbo recipes with the public. Come sample 10 different gumbos and decide for yourself which one is best! Wine and Indiana craft beer can be purchased during the event at the Tomlinson Tap Room. 

When: Tuesday, Feb. 13 from 6-8 pm. Tickets available here

Enjoy the music at The Jazz Kitchen

Two Indianapolis-based bands, Pork N’ Beans Brass Band and Clint Breeze and The Groove, are headlining this Fat Tuesday Celebration at The Jazz Kitchen. Co-sponsored by Yat’s, expect a spread of New Orleans fare including crab cakes, jambalaya, shrimp étoufée and more.

When: Tuesday, Feb. 13 from 7 pm to midnight. Tickets available here.

Take to the streets with Mardi Gras on Main in Speedway

If you’re 21+, experience a taste of New Orleans during Mardi Gras on Main in Speedway. This free event features street entertainment and special food and drink menus at eight local Speedway restaurants. If you go, don’t forget to dress up for a chance to win the costume contest! 

When: Friday, Feb. 9 at 8 pm

Head to a local watering hole with friends

If you can’t make it to Bourbon Street in New Orleans this year, try one of Indy’s favorite local drinking spots instead. Metazoa Brewing Company is honoring Fat Tuesday with a Mardi Gras Celebration, including local beer and catering from Yat’s. That evening, head to Howl at the Moon is hosting a Mardi Gras Happy Hour with live music, drink specials (try the cocktail of the night: “The Hurricane) and more.  


Metazoa Brewing Company: Tuesday, Feb 13 at 12 noon. Tickets available here.

Howl at the Moon: Tuesday, Feb 13 from 7 pm to 2 am. Free entry.

Celebrate German Karneval – right here in Indy  

Enjoy an “Out of this World” German Karneval at the lively Rathskeller in the Athenaeum. This traditional German venue is hosting an evening of live music from the band Polkamotion, dancing, German food and beer, door prizes and a costume contest.

When: Saturday, Feb 10 from 6:30-10 pm. Purchase tickets here.

Indulge your taste buds at one of Indy’s local Cajun restaurants

Lucky for us, Indy is home to some delicious Cajun-Creole dining. Zydecos, a famous New-Orleans style bistro in Mooresville, has a mouth-watering menu. Check out their website for the restaurant’s Mardi Gras festivities. Yat’s is a local Indy favorite, offering a daily rotating menu of homemade sauces and stews in a casual setting. Papa Roux is another tasty option, with a menu of Cajun stews and po-boys. Last but not least, celebrate Mardi Gras at Mudbugs Cajun Café in Carmel, as they’re offering all-you-can-eat gumbo on Tuesday, February 13th.

Laissez les bons temps rouler! (Let the good times roll!)