Chewbacchus is a Sci-fi Mardi Gras parade in New Orleans. The Chewbacchus mission: Saving the Galaxy...one drunken nerd at a time.
Local Sci-fi fans organized the parade through the Intergalactic Krewe of Chewbacchus for the first time during the 2011 Mardi Gras season. It was a huge success and in 2012, membership has more than doubled with over 400 members, a new route, and big plans.
Chewbacchus claims to be a "Carnival Krewe for the most revelrous of Star Wars Freaks, Trekkies, Whovianns, Mega-Geeks, Circuit Benders, Cryptozooligists, UFO Conspiracy Theorists, and all the rest of Super Nerdom."
The parade will feature the Hot 8 Brass Band, the Noisician Coalition, the Consortium of Genius (C.O.G.), the Space Cadets Marching Corps., the Vajar Jar Binks Dance Team, the Mighty Wookiee Fi-Yo Interstellar Mardi Gras Indians, and more.
Obviously, the krewe name is a Mardi Gras/sci-fi mix of the beloved furry Star Wars character and Bacchus, the beloved New Orleans super krewe named after the beloved God of Wine. But wouldn't Chew-Bacchus also be a great name for a food-centric parade? Tough luck foodies, the sci-fi geeks have claimed the name.
This sci-fi parade is also DIY and green. The krewe members make their own throws and "parade contraptions". The unique throws include bandoliers (a signature item akin to the Zulu coconut or Muses shoe), bean bags, hand towels, frisbees, mutated stuffed animals, home made beads & medallions, furries Wookie things, and more.
No petroleum product-using engines allowed. So all the contraptions or mini-floats are pushed, pulled, pedaled, use electric motors, or some other green method of propulsion. There should be about a dozen contraptions in the parade.
New parade features include a timely 2012 Mayan Temple on wheels and a King Cake Flying Saucer, complete with an alien baby of course, along with a new sub-krewe of art bike riders, the Chewbikkan Cyclepods. Among the returning highlights are the Wild Chewbaccatouls, a sci-fi take on the Mardi Gras Indians, and, especially for krewe members, the Bar2D2, a mobile R2D2 keg of beer.
Anything science-fiction related is fair game for members of Chewbacchus participating the parade. Themes from Star Trek, Dr. Who, Planet of the Apes, Twilight Zone, and your basic flying saucers and robots should be well represented. Most any of the costumes seen at Comic Con would be perfect.
The original rule again fantasy themes seems a bit more tolerant this year: "No elves (unless they are cyborgs) and no unicorns (unless they have rocket thrusters)."
Many throws will have the number 42 and the krewe’s membership dues are $42. That's a test of your sci-fi nerd level?
If you immediately knew that 42 is the answer to life and everything else, at least according to "The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy", then you probably should immediately join this krewe. If you were at New Orleans Wizard World Comic Con, you probably saw the mini-Chewbacchus parade through the exhibit floor and may already be a member.
The Krewe of Chewbacchus is seeking new members and is open to everyone.
The Chewbacchus parade is on Saturday, Feb. 18, 2012 and starts at the 3-Ring Circus/The Big Top, 1638 Clio (near Lee Circle), where there will be a line-up party with drink specials. It pauses on its route at Coliseum Square Park for the royal toast
The parade ends at the Howling Wolf on S. Peters Street in the Warehouse District, the site of the Krewe's Ball, the Chewbacchal, 7-10 p.m. Clockwork Elvis and C.O.G. are featured enterainment. Tickets are $20 for non-members. Krewe membership includes free entry to the event. Non-members may buy Chewbacchanal tickets for $20.