Fat Tuesday to be expanded to five days of festivities

Masked revellers at Fat Tuesday 2010
Masked revellers at Fat Tuesday 2010

ORGANISERS of the town’s Fat Tuesday celebrations have unveiled plans to turn this year’s event into a five-day mini festival.

In February Adam Daly and Bob Tipler put on a night of masks, music and mayhem with their mardi gras carnival. Hundreds of people came out to see some of the best-known local musicians perform in six venues across the town and raised more than £500 for St Michael’s Hospice.

Now spurred on by the success of last year, Fat Tuesday 2011 is being expanded to cover more events, in more venues with five days of fun building up to Tuesday, March 8.

Mr Tipler said: “After the incredible support we got last year we wanted to grow the event year on year. We are hoping to reach out to a broader audience and include some of the people we might miss on the Tuesday, whether they are too old, too young or just not free that night.”

To realise their dream, this year’s events will kick off on Friday, March 4 with the screening of a documentary about the legendary New Orleans mardi gras carnival which inspired the Hastings equivalent. The following day will see the South by South East music festival with up-and-coming bands battling it out at The Carlisle while a family fun day in St Leonards also takes place. On Sunday, March 6 there will be an outdoor jazz event in the Old Town, with a live music night on Monday, March 7.

Fat Tuesday itself will feature 16 live acts and eight venues, followed by an aftershow party into the early hours of Wednesday. The highlight of the live acts is likely to be Old Town jazz sensation Liane Carroll who joins this year’s tour.

“If you look at New Orleans or Rio de Janeiro then they have two or three weeks of events leading up to the carnival itself,” said Mr Tipler. “That is what we are working towards, not by spending vast amounts of money but building on the best we have already got and giving it a twist.”

Julie Brett, of St Michael’s Hospice, was delighted Fat Tuesday would be even bigger and better this year. She said: “I am absolutely thrilled they are including us again. It’s a really fun event and hopefully warms everyone up for another year of fundraising.”

Visit www.hastingsfattuesday.co.uk for more information.