Mystic Krewe of Barkus launches fund to assist pet owners with vet care during COVID-19 pandemic

The Krewe of Barkus parade in 2009. Photo by Mark Gstohl | CC.

A fund was launched by the Mystic Krewe of Barkus on Sunday to assist pet owners with veterinarian care during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Barkus is a canine-centric krewe. Founded in 1993, the krewe parades with dogs and their human companions through the French Quarter during Mardi Gras.

The fund, however, isn’t meant only for dogs.

The crowd-sourced Barkus COVID Care Fund was established by the krewe to help pay for urgent, non-emergency care for any pets.

Other serious veterinary care needed beyond routine procedures, including surgery and medications, will also be considered.

Additionally, pets with serious chronic health problems will be reviewed.

Since launching on April 13, the fund has generated more than $400.

Funding applications and instructions are found on The amount provided is determined on a case-by-case basis and goes directly to the veterinarian, not the individual.

For more information or to consider donating, email or visit the krewe’s Facebook page.

Mardi Gras season begins Jan. 6 with Phunny Phorty Phellows street car ride from Uptown to the French Quarter

The Storyville Stompers performing on Twelfth Night aboard the St. Charles Avenue street car in 2011. Picture by Jim Hobbs via Flickr | CC.

Revelers are required to show up no later than 6:30 p.m. on Jan. 6 at the Willow Street car barn if they’re hoping to catch the official start of the 2020 Mardi Gras season with the Phunny Phorty Phellows.

The barn, located at 8200 Willow St., is where the Phellows gather to begin their street car ride at 7 p.m. sharp along St. Charles Avenue and ending at the corner of Canal and Bourbon streets.

The Phellows tradition coincides with Twelfth Night, or the 12th day after Christmas, starts the Mardi Gras season and kicks off the countdown to Fat (Shrove) Tuesday on Feb. 25.

The tradition first appeared after the parade of Rex in 1878, but disbanded in 1898, according to the krewe’s website.

Phellows was ultimately revived in 1981, with the street car rides beginning a year later in 1982.

This year’s ride will include a toast from members of the Krewe of Oak with the Phellows and the Storyville Stompers brass band.

The street car ride runs approximately six miles and may include revelers dressed in bizarre “satirical costume that reflect topical issues.”

Their motto is “a little nonsense now and then is cherished by the best of men.”

Riders will likely witness the selection of Phellows’ queen and king–or “boss”–who are chosen when they find the baby in each of the King Cakes that are passed around the street car as everyone sips champagne.

After reaching Canal Street, the street car will loop and head back down St. Charles Avenue, then back to the Willow Street barn on South Carrollton Avenue.