Mardi Gras has arrived! Rex proclaims holiday, toasts with King Zulu at riverfront

NEW ORLEANS -- It's official: Mardi Gras has arrived.

Rex made his annual Mardi Gras proclamation Monday night at Woldenberg Park on the riverfront, alongside Mayor Mitch Landrieu and Mayor-elect Latoya Cantrell, both of whom heeded Rex's request to shut the city down and celebrate.

Rex, Poco Sloss, declared the following:

"That during the great celebration, all commercial endeavors be suspended throughout the realm, so that pleasure may rule both day and night. That the children of the realm be freed from their studies and permitted to participate in the pageantry, that the mayor and the city council cease and desist from governance for this one great day, and join in the revelry!"

Following his proclamation, King Zulu, Brent D. Washington, Sr., made a special appearance on stage so the two krewe kings could toast and kick off the festivities.

"As far back as I can look, it's just nothing but love," Washington said. "Hail Zulu!"

Washington and his wife, Zulu Queen 2018 Troye Madison Washington, arrived at the riverfront on a U.S. Coast Guard boat, complete with a Zulu second line. Filmmaker and Zulu Grand Marshal Spike Lee was waiting for them when the 2018 royalty stepped off the boat.

Watch video of their arrival below:

Zulu rolls at 8 a.m., while Rex rolls at 10 a.m. along the Uptown parade route.