Stano Law - February 2019

monthly “You are not alone.”

February 2019

KREWES, KING CAKE, AND CULTURE T he F ascinating H istory of M ardi G ras


Paul Stano


I’mnot going to give you a list of traditional resolutions—you’ve heard enough of those. Instead, I’mgoing to share some practical New Year’s resolution ideas that will help you and your adult children in 2019. Let’s get started. 1. Have a life-care conversationwith your spouse about long-termcare planning. Have you discussed how you will finance the $10,000 per month nursing home bill? The chances of needing long-term care exceed 70 percent if you reach the age of 65. 2. Make an inventory of your assets. Get a binder or portable file and place all of your life insurance policies, IRA statements, and any investment documents inside andmake sure that they are clearly labeled. 3. Update your estate documents. Make sure that you and your spouse both have strong power of attorney documents as well as updated wills and trusts. Good news— I can help you accomplish all of these. Educate yourself at one of our monthly seminars. You can register by calling us at (440) 888-6448 or visit

Unlike most holidays, Mardi Gras is associated with a place as much as it is a time. When people think of Mardi Gras, they automatically think of New Orleans. The celebration, held on a Tuesday in either February or March, is a point of pride for NOLA residents but is often misunderstood by the general public. Here’s what you need to know about America’s most regional holiday.


Mardi Gras doesn’t follow the traditional holiday calendar patterns we’re familiar with. It doesn’t fall on a static date, like Christmas, or a specific day within a month, like Memorial Day. Instead, it follows the pattern of Easter, which is based on a more complicated formula. Easter takes place on the Sunday after the first ecclesiastical full moon occurring on or after the vernal equinox (the start of spring). An ecclesiastical full moon, as opposed to a regular full moon, is determined by Catholic church tables, not by lunar patterns. While that part is pretty complex, determining the date of Mardi Gras is much easier: It’s 47 days before Easter. As such, it can fall on any Tuesday between Feb. 3 and March 9, hence the name Mardi Gras, or “Fat Tuesday.”


While New Orleans is undoubtedly the place everyone associates with Mardi Gras, it is not where the holiday originated in America. That honor belongs to Mobile, Alabama, which organized the first widespread Mardi Gras celebrations in 1703. As more people moved to New Orleans, which became the capital of Louisiana in 1723, the holiday took root there.


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