Chris Owens French Quarter Easter Parade

Chris Owens French Quarter Easter Parade
The French Quarter of New Orleans is known for hosting not one, but three Easter parades: the Historic French Quarter Easter Parade, the Chris Owens French Quarter Easter Parade, and the Gay Easter Parade. The second one has been held every year since the early 1980s.

Chris Owens is a well-known New Orleans performer, club owner and entrepreneur who bases her act out of the French Quarter (Vieux Carré Historic District) and is well-known in Louisiana and throughout the Southern United States. She has been a Vieux Carré fixture since the early 1960s.

When Owens opened a nightclub on St. Louis Street, she intended it to be a low-key sideline establishment, but business unexpectedly exploded. Realizing that it was Owens’ performance that drew visitors, she and her husband purchased a bigger building on the corner of St. Louis Street and Bourbon Street. Soon the Chris Owens Review became one of the biggest attractions in town.

Chris Owens founded the annual French Quarter Easter parade in the early 1980s, soon after her husband’s death of heart attack. On Easter Sunday, she slips into the role of the Grand Duchess and leads the parade through the streets of the Vieux Carré.

The Chris Owens French Quarter Easter Parade is preceded by a reception held at the Omni Royal Orleans Hotel Ballroom at 11 a.m. It includes a silent auction, hat contest, and entertainment. When the reception is over, revelers hop on their lavishly decorated floats and ride through the historic French Quarter.

The parade begins at the corner of Canal and Bourbon streets at 1 p.m. It is led by Chris Owens as the Grand Duchess, standing proudly on her float in a stunning outfit, assisted by elegantly attired attendants. Alongside colorful floats, the procession features vintage convertibles, brass bands, dance groups and other entertainers. It makes its way through the Vieux Carré, ending at the Omni Royal Orleans Hotel.

The Chris Owens Parade is followed by a champagne brunch and dancing. And those who think that this still isn’t enough can attend the French Quarter Gay Easter Parade that kicks off at 4 p.m. and concludes Easter celebrations in New Orleans.

Chris Owens French Quarter Easter Parade

Photo: Floatie Hock




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