BAY ST. LOUIS, MS (WLOX) - For a group of people in Bay St. Louis, Mardi Gras on the coast wasn't big enough. So they created a parade of their own, but this one isn't exactly like all the others. The Mystic Krewe of the Seahorse celebrated its first parade Monday night.
Co-founder Donald Rafferty was ecstatic to get this night rolling.
"I've seen more people out on this Monday night in Bay St. Louis than ever before, so it's obviously filling a void that we hope to really make it forever," said Rafferty.
He said the timing couldn't be more perfect.
"Incidentally and coincidentally, we're starting this parade at the exact spot where the Seahorse, back 200 years, docked," said Rafferty.
The Krewe of the Seahorse was started as a tribute to a handful of brave men who fought the British in a David and Goliath style battle in 1814. To keep the British from taking the USS Seahorse, the crew burned it on the shore just down the street from the parade's starting point. This night was a kick-off of sorts leading to the bicentennial celebration and the reenactment of the crucial battle.
Bay St. Louis native Dot Kersanac said the parade was more intimate than others in the area.
"And it's just so exciting that we can have something this great in such a small town," said Kersanac.
Another parade goer agreed. Jane Anne Gleeson lives right off of the parade route.
"It's lots more than I expected. It's a fun, hometown parade and everybody's having a great time," said Gleeson.
With the Krewe forming just a couple of months ago, the whole night was more than everyone expected. The parade had more than 60 floats, mostly made up of decorated cars and golf carts. The very first King Oceanus was Carter Church and the Queen Tethys was Wendy McDonald. The Grand Marshal was Miss Mississippi 2013 Chelsea Rick.
In December, the crew will reenact the Battle of Bay St. Louis, and they expect to make the parade an annual event.