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Welcome to Mobile – the Mother of Mystics. Despite urban legends

to the contrary, every Mobilian can tell you with impunity the truth about how Mardi Gras came to be celebrated in its festive North American manner. Of course, Mobile is the Mother of Mardi Gras. Case closed, you’ll hear.

Well, I’m not going weigh in on that issue. Besides, we don’t really have a problem with our cousins’ version of our family celebration. We’re quite comfortable welcoming those who visit, sharing with all our Alabama Coast hospitality. After all, Mardi Gras in Mobile is truly a family celebration. The kids will have a great time as they are showered with doubloons, stuffed animals, beads and – of course – MoonPies. Parents and "kids of all ages” will enjoy the pageantry of the parades, the enthusiasm of the marching bands and will likely become caught

up in the "battle for beads.” Everyone becomes immersed in the cacophony of sights and sounds that never seem to end. Frankly,it’s just plain fun!

You’ll also find that the spirit of Mardi Gras extends well beyond the parade routes. It’s deep in the hearts and souls of us all. Respect for tradition, for family, for our values is, to borrow a phrase, "the fabric of our lives” down here. During this season of frivolity, we shake off a bit of the stresses of everyday life. We remember to smile, to laugh, and to not take ourselves – or life – too seriously. We remember funny stories of past Mardi Gras, renew our personal family traditions and start new ones. You’ll find that we love Mardi Gras for reasons too simple and too complex to clearly explain. Most importantly, we love sharing Mardi Gras with you.

Thank you for coming to play with us. Please make yourself at home because you’re family, too! Of course, we want you to be careful. A party this big can be a bit daunting at times. Keep an eye on the kids, pace yourselves and don’t forget to take a timeout from Mardi Gras to experience some of the rest of what the

Alabama Coast has to offer. And as our favorite cousins to the west like to say, "Laissez les bon temps rouler!”



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Players, coaches, families and fans were treated to a full week of our version of Southern Hospitality, but the GoDaddy Bowl is more than just a game. Full hotel rooms, busy restaurants and packed bars and attractions help generate some $20 million in total economic impact for the City and the region. In addition, because of the tie-in with ESPN, the City of Mobile reaps some $8 million in on-air advertising and promotion during the broadcast. In fact, in addition to the game, the folks who produce the GoDaddy Bowl work to make an impact in our community all year long.

Sponsored events include celebrity golf tournaments, sailing regattas, football camps and student-athlete recognition programs. Capping off the year of community events are two programs celebrating reading and art. For 15 years, the HOAR Program Management/GoDaddy Bowl Reading and Writing Program has recognized excellence in those two skills. Open to all 5th graders along the Alabama, Mississippi and Florida Gulf Coasts, the seven week contest produced 10 finalists who were awarded scholarships ranging from $500 to $5000. They were also invited to attend all of the GoDaddy Bowl activities during the week. Over the past 15 years, the HOAR Program Management/GoDaddy Bowl Reading and Writing Program has awarded more than $264,000 in scholarship money to local students And celebrating art under the theme "Southern Charm”, the GoDaddy Bowl and New Horizons Credit Union concluded the tenth annual art contest. Over 200 entries were received and the best were selected in three grade level categories:

 6th-8th, 9th-10th, and 11th-12th. Since 2007, winning artwork has been chosen for the front cover of the GoDaddy Bowl Football Program, and all winners are featured in the 2015 program Since the contest’s inception, the GoDaddy Bowl has awarded over $17,800 to local schools’ art program.

 


 


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