DJ Diesel – better known as basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal – will take over a Mardi Gras celebration next month.
Shaq will spin tracks in the Effen Tent, behind Social Bar and Grill Soulard (1551 South 7th Street), from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on February 26. The athlete-turned-musician before DJ’d at Lollapalooza in 2019 and the Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC) in Orlando, Florida and Las Vegas, Nevada. He’s also played at humble spots, such as in his kitchen for his sons at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic — in addition as landing big name collaborations with the likes of DJ Steve Aoki.
Tickets are nevertheless obtainable at the moment on Eventbrite, though they appear to be going fast. The event is only open to those 21 years of age or older. The tickets include access to an open bar.
The visit by Shaq/DJ Diesel coincides with other events happening around the Lou during Mardi Gras celebrations. In order to get into indoor events put on by Soulard Mardi Gras, which includes their Mardi Gras Village tents, event organizers recently announced attendees must have proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID-19 rapid or PCR test within 72 hours of attendance.
A press release detailed Mardi Gras organizers are working with Ballpark Village, which is providing rapid COVID-19 tests throughout the Mardi Gras season.
“The Ballpark Village testing site will be a functional and reliable option for our guests,” Mack Bradley, Mardi Gras Foundation president, said. “We are committed to doing what we can to keep our guests and our community safe and healthy. These additional safeguards and resources will permit us to have some much-needed fun as the season unfolds.”
Additional events that will require the COVID-19 safety protocols include the Family Winter Carnival on January 22, the Cajun Cook-Off on February 12, the Mayor’s Ball on February 25 and Grand Parade Day on February 26.
“We’ve been closely monitoring the pandemic conditions and what they average for our ability to produce Mardi Gras events that are both safe and fun,” Bradley said in the press release. “In addition to complying with all City public health orders and following CDC guidance, we have decided to implement further entry requirements to protect the health and safety of our guests, which are in line with current policies at other large entertainment venues in our vicinity such as Enterprise Center and The Pageant.”
Bradley additional the organization continues to monitor the information from public health experts to guide their current health and safety measures, and the organization may make additional adjustments “as circumstances dictate.”
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