For Immediate Release
Shelley Johnson, executive director
Kaylen Fletcher, public relations manger

Get in the Mardi Gras Spirit with Twelfth Night

LAKE CHARLES, La. (December 20, 2011)--Mardi Gras makes its flamboyant entrance on Friday, Jan. 6 with the annual Twelfth Night celebration. This will kick off a tightly packed 2012 season of revelry. An audience of 3,500 will 'pass a good time' at the Lake Charles Civic Center Coliseum by winning grand prizes and hailing the kings and queens of more than 50 krewes. 

Guests in the Twelfth Night audience who find "babies" in their pieces of King Cake, win grand prizes which will include prizes from local merchants and businesses of Southwest Louisiana. 

Twelfth Night-twelve days after Christmas-is the legendary beginning of the Mardi Gras season prior to Lent. Following tradition, Mardi Gras royalty of 2011 wave their symbolic good-byes to the thousands who turn out to see the grand fanfare of costumes and to greet the new season. Many of the fabulous costumes will take their places in the Mardi Gras Museum of Imperial Calcasieu.

The Southwest Louisiana version of carnival is unique with its family-oriented mambo and Zydeco, glittering costumes, rollicking parades, spicy gumbo, Cajun cuisine, and genuine Louisiana music and dancing, attracting half a million guests each year. The Lake Charles Twelfth Night is exceptional because it presents the extravagant costumes of more than 50 private krewes to the general public. 

Twelfth Night is sponsored by Mardi Gras of Southwest Louisiana, Inc. a non profit organization that promotes more than 20 family-friendly events. The festival contributes more than $18 million to the local economy and is fast becoming a tourist attraction although it maintains its down-home spirit.

More information is listed on the Mardi Gras website at or through the Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana Convention & Visitors Bureau at (337) 436-9588.