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Mardi Gras culminates on Fat Tuesday

The Associated Press, Tuesday, February 21, 2012, 1:20am (PST)

NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- Rocker Bret Michaels and Grammy-winning singer Cyndi Lauper were expected to usher in Mardi Gras with musical performances in the wee hours of the morning Tuesday during a glitzy ball following the Orpheus parade.

Michaels, the bandana-wearing Poison frontman, and Lauper were the celebrity riders in Orpheus, the parade club founded in 1993 by New Orleans native actor and crooner Harry Connick Jr.

As the Orpheus ball was to wind down early Tuesday, revelers geared up for the Fat Tuesday parades rolling shortly after daybreak. Some revelers would party through the night.

Clarinetist Pete Fountain will be leading his marching band from the city's Garden District to the French Quarter.

Lent follows Fat Tuesday. It is the period of fasting and repentance before Easter Sunday.

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