Victor Harris is the Big Chief of the Spirit of Fi Yi Yi and the Mandingo Warriors, a Mardi Gras Indian tribe he began with his best friend, Collins “Coach” Lewis, in 1984. Together with his sewing committee, he transformed Carnival I downtown New Orleans tradition by masking as an homage to his African heritage. 2018 marked 52 years of consecutive masking, more than any other chief in the history of the tradition.
2 p.m. to 3 p.m.
State Capitol Building, House Committee Room 5
Spy Boys, Flag Boys, Big Chiefs: Mardi Gras Indians
3:15 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Barnes & Noble Bookselling Tent
Fire in the Hole: The Spirit Work of Fi Yi Yi & the Mandingo Warriors
During Mardi Gras, spectators wait for the approach of the Mardi Gras Indians, a sublime spectacle of dancing, chanting, and gorgeous hand-sewn costumes. But rarely are they shown the human stories behind this unique New Orleans tradition. Told through a collective oral history, Fire In The Hole weaves together the voices of costumers, anthropologists, and photographers to offer the previously undocumented stories of crafting costumes, tribe formations, and political engagement that has been so important to generations of New Orleanians. Accompanying these stories are over 200 color photographs, which capture the intimate, candid, and ecstatic moments of Fi Yi Yi and the Mandingo Warriors.
Book-loving volunteers are essential to the Louisiana Book Festival's success. Whether it's escorting authors, guiding visitors, selling refreshments, working with children in the Young Readers Pavilion or other fun and rewarding assignments, the Louisiana Book Festival wants you to join the volunteer team.