Partiers in New Orleans are taking one last chance to eat, drink and be merry before Lent. Tourism officials don’t believe the economic downturn has dampened the mood at this year’s Mardi Gras celebrations, and say that big crowds over the weekend and nearly full hotels bode well for the annual event.
Thousands of revelers are expected to line the streets Tuesday morning for one more day of parades. Jim Belushi and his Sacred Hearts band ushered in the final day, playing hits including “Soul Man” and “Hard to Handle” into the morning.
Mardi Gras officially ends at midnight Tuesday. In heavily Catholic New Orleans, many will be in church Wednesday to have ashes daubed on their foreheads as they begin 40 days of prayer, penitence and self-denial leading up to Easter.
From <a href="http://hellobeautiful.com/2015/12/22/sandra-bland-family-non-indictment/" target="_blank"><strong>Sandra Bland</strong></a> to the shootings in <a href="http://hellobeautiful.com/2015/06/20/why-is-south-carolina-using-a-judge-in-the-charleston-church-massacre-who-has-used-the-n-word-before/" target="_blank">Charleston, South Carolina</a>, African Americans were sadly reminded that being <a href="http://hellobeautiful.com/2015/12/13/police-brutality-2015/" target="_blank">Black in America</a> is much harder than it ought to be. And yet in the same breath, 2015 was a year of Black joy during which our culture dominated not only in our lives, but in the mainstream consciousness. From <a href="http://hellobeautiful.com/2015/07/16/lee-daniels-and-taraji-p-henson-emmy-empire/" target="_blank">Cookie Lyons</a> to the <a href="http://hellobeautiful.com/2015/10/17/ebony-editor-comments-cosby-cover/" target="_blank">Cosby <em>Ebony </em>cover</a>, our brilliance helped to push the conversation, affirm our greatness, make history and most important, make us laugh.
So to celebrate that greatness, we put together this list of the most defining Black pop culture moments of 2015. And don’t worry: <a href="http://hellobeautiful.com/2015/12/08/rachel-dolezal-interview/" target="_blank">Rachel Dolezal </a>is nowhere to be seen.