SMART BETS: Asheville Mardi Gras

Save gas and vacation days — you can skip that drive to New Orleans for Mardi Gras. Instead, fling your beads right here at home: Asheville Mardi Gras kicks off the season by slicing a King Cake and determining the next Mardi Gras King and Queen. (This year’s theme is “French Broads and Odd Fellows,” Mardi Gras weekend starts Saturday, Feb. 9.) The 2013 Twelfth Night celebration takes place on Sunday, Jan. 6 at Eleven on Grove, beginning at 6 p.m. Cake cutting at 8 p.m. DJ Sloan Wolf & Steve-O provide music and visuals, Asheville Second Line (Asheville's very own Mardi Gras marching band) will debut. http://www.ashevillemardigras.org. Photo by David Carpenter

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