History Of The Mardi Gras Moon Pie
Throwing Moon Pies originally began in Mobile , AL, where they are still the catch of choice for the parades there. Here in Louisiana, the tradition is much younger. But why a Moon Pie?
A lot of people that aren’t that familiar with the Mobile style should know that before 1974, food has always been involved as a throw ever since 1949, when Crackerjacks, (peanuts and caramel nuggets) were thrown by a lot of krewes as a treat for the revelers. Crackerjacks were brought about because of the cheap alternative it presented to beads.
However, people kept getting beaned with the end of those rectangular boxes that the treats came in, and those box ends were hard and sharp. Sensing something needed to be done, the Mobile City Official banned the candied popcorn as a throw in about 1972.
A lot of treats and articles preceded the Mobile icon into the parades as the krewes searched for a replacement to the popular popcorn in a treat.
The first to throw moon pies were the krewe of “Maids of Mirth” in 1974 as an alternative to the recently banned boxes of cracker jacks. Soon other krewes were following the action as the throw caught on.
Moon Pie is a trade marked name of the Chattanooga bakery in Tennessee. These are still wrapped in it’s colorful package. That bakery still put out the original moonpies which are still ordered by some. There are, however, other companies out there that sell other styles and brands of moonpies to the krewes by, literally, the ton. These should be called Mardi Gras pies.
The Chattanooga Bakery began making moon pies in 1916. They first came in graham cracker cookies with a marshmallow center. Now, the famed cookies come in chocolate, banana, coconut, orange and vanilla.
Mardi Gras pies are smaller than the original pies and come in a silver wrapper, often with an organization’s emblem on the wrapper. Mardi Gras pies come now in strawberry, and apple.