The Gulf Coast will officially change from the holiday season to Carnival season on Jan. 5, with the celebration of Twelfth Night beginning at the Biloxi Visitors Center and parading to the Mardi Gras Museum. The occasion also serves as reminder of the religious significance of Carnival, often lost on the tens of thousands of revelers at Mardi Gras parades. Twelfth Night, the 12th day from Christmas, is the night before the Epiphany, the day when the three wise men visited the infant Jesus, foretelling the revelation of God the Son being born as a human.
The Twelfth Night gathering will begin at the Visitors Center, and at 6 p.m., the reigning Royal Court of Gulf Coast Carnival Association will be presented to extinguish the Christmas lights at the Biloxi Lighthouse. The entourage will then board a float and parade to the Mardi Gras Museum, where, at 6:30 p.m., the lights at the Mardi Gras Museum will be illuminated, signaling the beginning of Carnival season.