In New Orleans, a celebration is more than just an event. It’s a work of art, an experience, and a personal statement all wrapped into one, which is why the city goes all out for its festivities – especially for weddings!

There are plenty of well-known traditions that are essential for a New Orleans-style wedding reception, like wedding umbrellas, brass bands, and wedding cake pulls. But if you want to make your big day really stand out, there are a few additions that can take your wedding to the next level.

Here’s a few uniquely New Orleans upgrades to make your big day truly exceptional!

New Orleans Style Upgrades For A Stand Out Wedding Reception

Invite Mardi Gras Indians to Your Second Line

A second line is one of the most popular New Orleans wedding traditions that starts your reception off on a high note. It turns the trip from the ceremony to the venue into a grand celebration with your very own parade.

But if you want to treat your wedding party to a real New Orleans spectacle, the Mardi Gras Indian Show is the perfect way to jazz up your second line!

Mardi Gras Indian Tribes are unique and vibrant treasures of New Orleans culture. The tradition dates back more than a century, and their intricate hand-sewn suits are beautiful works of folk art.

Rebecca Todd
Mardi Gras Indians

Each costume takes an entire year to create, with hundreds of thousands of beads, brightly dyed ostrich plumes, sequins, velvet, and rhinestones. Usually, these culture bearers only make a few costumed appearances every year – during Mardi Gras and on Super Sunday – but with the Mardi Gras Indian Show, a tribe will turn your wedding into once-in-a-lifetime experience!

The Mardi Gras Indian Show’s wedding package lets you and your guests dance through the streets with authentic Mardi Gras Indians to the music of a New Orleans Jazz Band.

With their lively dance steps, eye-popping costumes, and cherished history, you’re guaranteed to make memories of a lifetime when you add Mardi Gras Indians to the guest list!

Treat Your Guests to a Taste of New Orleans

In a city known for amazing food, there are limitless menu options for your New Orleans wedding reception.

There’s nothing wrong with choosing the customary chicken or fish options. But traditional picks aside, the dish you decide to serve is a great opportunity to treat your guests to New Orleans’ unique flavors.

Food trucks are a thriving part of New Orleans’ foodie culture and they can be perfect additions to your festivities. There are trucks dedicated to cuisines of all kinds, from spicy, traditional delights like crawfish or gumbo to sweet New Orleans treats like beignets.

Rebecca Todd
Imperial Woodpecker Sno-Balls

For a cooler choice, you can’t go wrong with a sno ball stand at your wedding reception. 

Sno balls are a beloved New Orleans treat made with sweet, flavorful syrup and finely shaved ice. And many of New Orleans’ famous sno ball stands offer catering services, so you can add the city’s favorite frozen confection to the party.

It’s not only a delightful dessert option that your guests will love - it’s a great way to add a taste of New Orleans to your menu.

Make Your Reception a Work of Art with Live Painting

If you’re looking for a marvelous New Orleans-style upgrade for your reception, look no further than the city’s incredible art community.

Art is everywhere in New Orleans. There are studios, galleries, and thriving artists in every corner of the city, and many of New Orleans’ most gifted painters offer live painting for special occasions.

Their incredible talent is a great way to make your wedding reception a one-of-a-kind affair. While you and your guests are celebrating your milestone, a New Orleans artist will capture the cherished moments of your event, making an original piece of art on-site.

With live painting at your reception, you get to see a professional artist bring your painting to life. It doesn’t just memorialize the magic of your wedding – it’s a part of the whole experience, making it a true masterpiece you can treasure forever.

For a standout wedding reception, these upgrades add an only-in-New-Orleans style to your celebration - be sure to check out all the incredible New Orleans wedding professionals that will make your big day special!

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