Krewe founders Earl and Heidi LeBlanc hatched the idea a few summers ago when they were looking for a way to quickly get rid of a mass of old toys.
“We tried having a garage sale at first but the number of people coming by just wasn’t there. Then we were going to hurl them all into the canal but Heidi kept feeling guilty because it was illegal. I didn’t care, but you know how that goes,” said Earl.
After talking it over for the better part of two days, the couple realized the easiest way to toss the stuff would be over the side of a float.
“You can be fined thousands of dollars for dumping things just about anywhere in Greater New Orleans, but if it’s thrown from a float it’s totally legal!” said Mr. LeBlanc.
Earl and Heidi, expecting a very small parade the first year, finally got the necessary permits and put applications online for 150 spots on 10 or 12 floats. Within one hour, they had amassed a 480-page waiting list of potential members as thousands of parents from across Greater New Orleans had applied to become part of their krewe.
Two lucky parents, who are ecstatic to be in that number, can’t wait to help found one of the area’s newest Mardi Gras traditions.
“Since our son was born eight years ago, the number of toys that come into the house never ends,” said new krewe member Jessie Blaine. “It was fun at first getting all the newborn toys and stuff, but the next thing we know it’s eight years later and our house had been turned into a storage unit for the kid. We accumulated so frickin’ much.”
About six weeks after applying to become members of The Krewe of Parents, the Tregre’s prayers were answered.
“We were able to clear out the attic, the garage, and the guest bedroom,” said wife Kylie. It was a-freakin-mazing. The parade is going to be even better. We can’t wait to chuck all that stuff.”
This year’s theme will be “I Can’t Even,” and the procession will feature 3,057 floats, 10 silent marching bands, and four dance groups of one-time dancer parents clinging by a thread to their former lives.
Some Throw highlights will include clothes that were going to fit again one day, toys that make sounds, stuffed animals that seem to reproduce like jackrabbits, kids’ DVDs burned into parents minds and can now burn in hell, and very dusty “that’s-a-great-idea-I-can-save-time-and-money-by-working-at-home” treadmills turned laundry holders.