The Mardi Gras Zone sits in a residential part of the Marigny neighborhood, and started out as a Mardi Gras supply store—a place to get bulk boas and bulk beads. But after Hurricane Katrina wiped out the neighborhood’s chief grocery, it morphed into a shop selling basic commodities like milk and bread (at first) before expanding its inventory based on customer requests. The result? An eclectic selection of goods, from shiny beads to exotic juices and dried fruits. The on-site deli has expanded, and serves up prepared meals to regulars. It’s a great place to load up on provisions if you’re planning to explore by bike or on foot, and just walking in offers an excuse to marvel at the minor strangeness of it all.