How Universal Orlando Brings the Mardi Gras Parade Floats to Life

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Every year, Universal Orlando’s Art and Design Team works wonders to bring the Mardi Gras Parade to life at Universal Studios Florida. As soon as one parade ends, they’re already planning for the next, creating six new floats to join six returning favorites.

Related: The Official Universal Orlando Resort App Receives Major Update


This year’s theme celebrates the elements, with floats representing earth, wind, fire, water, the sun, and the moon. The team, led by Art Manager Kerstin Mais and Lead Set Dresser Deb Aull, takes four weeks to transform blank float skeletons into dazzling works of art.


The process begins with “glittering,” where the team applies glitter to the floats based on the designers’ vision. This step alone takes up to two weeks. Then, they add layers of foliage, beads, and decorative items to make the floats pop. The team’s creativity and teamwork are key to bringing these designs to life.

Related: Round Up of the Delicious Treats We Tried On the Opening Day of Mardi Gras at Universal Studios Florida


The final step is adding special effects, lighting, and audio to enhance the parade experience. When the floats make their debut, the team takes pride in seeing their hard work come together, creating memorable moments for parade-goers.


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Chris is a Pennsylvania native who relocated to Florida to be closer to the magic in 2022. You can find him in one of the Walt Disney World or Universal Orlando Resort theme parks at least once per week. He leverages his extensive parks experience as a travel agent with Destinations To Travel. Reach out to Chris to start planning your next magical vacation today!
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