LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) — One of the biggest Mardi Gras events in Acadiana has finally returned to the limelight after COVID-19 disrupted festivities in the last couple of years — the Krewe of Bonaparte Ball.

“It’s awesome,” said Bonaparte President Mike Becnel. “I think after two years, everybody is ready to get back to normal. This year our parade had 900 riders. It was a really good time.”

For nearly 50 years, Bonaparte has been a big part of Lafayette Mardi Gras. Becnel says after two years of not being able to celebrate, people are more ready than ever.

“I think they are,” he said. “I know Lafayette in general is. Our membership, they really came out and we have a sold-out crowd tonight. It’s going to be nice. It’s going to be a real good time.”

The theme this year: “Bonaparte goes All-American.”

“The ball captain picks the theme,” said Becnel. “It’s a wonderful deal. I think he was ready to get back to normal and get America back opened up. We’re ready and willing.”

Part of the festivities Monday night included a show from the king, queen, dukes, and maids.

“All of them have something to do with America the beautiful and made in America,” said Becnel. “We’re just going to have a good time.”