Well technically, it wasn’t actually a “ball.” The attire was casual and so was the food. But the “Mardi Gras Ball for Special People” was so much fun and absolutely free! This annual party that takes place at the Moody Gardens convention center in Galveston is for people with special needs and their families or caregivers. I had RSVPed weeks ago, but when the day came, I almost changed my mind. I’m not good at driving long distances (although it’s just an hour and a half away), and I am deathly afraid of bridges (although the bridge to Galveston Island is not very high). I’m so glad I sucked it up, because the girls and I had a fabulous time.
First, for the record, Jasmine cried or whined the entire ride to Galveston. Just minutes after leaving our garage, she dropped a toy that she had brought along (not really a toy, but one of those cardboard tubes from a roll of paper towels). She insisted that I pick it up, but I am trying to get the girls in the habit of not requesting anything of me while I’m driving. Don’t ask me to hand you something, turn on the radio, turn up the volume, look at something, etc. Lately, it has gotten to be too much. So I held firm that she would have to wait until we got to our destination, which, in this case, was an hour and a half away. And she cried The. Entire. Ride!
But all is well that ends well! I’m not sure who sponsors this annual party, but they really spoiled us guests. Complimentary food and dessert (hot dogs, chips, and cookies – no complaints here), face painting, balloon art, free Mardi Gras hats/beads/crowns/tiaras, an awesome DJ playing all the best songs (including fun line dances), and character appearances galore. Usually at events like this, you’re competing with the other guests for a chance to take a picture with one of the costumed characters. At this event, there were characters coming out of the woodwork! Grant it, some of these were not officially licensed characters, but basically just volunteers with special costumes on. Still, it was a treat. There was Moana, Princess Jasmine, Snow White, a legion of Star Wars characters, a cow, otter, mascots from McDonald’s, Pirates of the Caribbean characters, and so many more. I eventually just stopped taking pictures, but here are a handful.