Beads, booze, music, food – if you’re looking for a good time come spring, you don’t want to miss FollyGras. Sure, we may not have Bourbon Street . . . but we do have Center Street and, when you’re on Folly, that’s just as good.
The town turns up in mass for this annual event, wearing brightly colored baubles around their necks and prepared to celebrate in the spirit of New Orleans. Masks and costumes aren’t just accepted; they are encouraged at this one-of-a-kind coastal fete.
Like traditional Mardi Gras festivities, FollyGras takes place each year during the month of February. And, really, can you think of a better way to break up the cold weather monotony of winter and get excited about the coming of spring than joining fellow revelers filling up Center Street? As can be expected, the event is extremely popular, attracting up to 15,000 attendees annually.
If you want to attend and aren’t sure where FollyGras is held, well, don’t worry – it’s pretty impossible to miss. In addition to the throngs of festival goers flooding the streets, the event extends into many of the restaurants and bars, where New Orleans-style food and drinks are served. The event’s crowning jewel, of course, is the parade (and non-stop party) down Center Street.
So what should you expect from this favorite Folly event? In a word, lots.
Local musicians rock the festival with raucous sets, providing a perfect soundtrack for the street party. Past performers have included Gaslight Street, Soul Fish, Shakin’ Martinis, Jordan Igoe, Ashes of Old Ways and the Nick Clyburn Band.
And while FollyGras is most decidedly fun for adults, it’s kid-friendly, too – little ones are thrilled by activities like face painting and a pet parade.
Held in conjunction with the event, the Folly Beach Arts and Crafts Guild hosts its Art in the Park Fair where dozens of local artisans and nonprofit vendors are on hand selling unique, handcrafted goods. Food booths and trucks also line the street with seasonal and special New Orleans-style fare (think crawfish boil!).
Here’s the best part: FollyGras is free to attend. You pay nothing to get onto Center Street and partake of the jovial spirit at the parade and party. You will, naturally, have to pay for anything you plan to purchase to eat, drink, or take home as a souvenir. In order to have an adult beverage, you’ll need to purchase a wristband for $1.
Other than that, just come prepared to laissez les bons temps rouler or “let the good times roll!”