If you've never been to New Orleans for Fat Tuesday, it's one thing you've got to put on your list. It's a party like no other, ranging from the colorful traditions of parades, carnival krewes and Mardi Gras Indians to the naughty “Girls Gone Wild” action on Bourbon Street. (As someone explained to me on the plane when I went years ago, “Beads will become the most important thing in your life.”) If you're reading this, you're obviously not makin' it this year, but you can pick up a little down-home flavor at the 22nd annual Farmers Market Mardi Gras Celebration. The family-friendly affair (which also runs Fri.-Sun., March 4-6) features mask-making, bead-throwing, Dixie Beer and Zydeco music courtesy of Eddie Baytos & the Nervis Bros. Of course, you'll want to stop by the Gumbo Pot, where many Angelenos get their first taste of Cajun cuisine. (Tip: The shrimp po' boy made Squid Ink's list of “Top 10 Things to Eat at the Original Third and Fairfax Farmers Market.”)

Tue., March 8, 6:30-9:30 p.m., 2011

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