Laissez les bon temps rouler!

Mardi Gras & All that Jazz

Don't worry if your Cajun French is rusty: "laissez les bon temps rouler" (pronounced "Lay-say le bon tom roo-lay") just means "let the good times roll." And they will be rolling at Lourdes Foundation’s 16th Annual Mardi Gras. This fun-filled evening of music and food raises money in support of the Foundation and all its good works. 

This annual fundraiser will be held February 13th at 6pm, in the Julian Carroll Convention Center in downtown Paducah. Lew Jetton & 61 South is back by popular demand and will liven up the party with their Blues and Southern Rock. 

Guests can satisfy their Cajun cravings with gourmet treats from popular restaurants and caterers throughout the region. Over ten food vendors will serve dishes and samples such as Cajun sauces, gourmet coffees, “King cake”, and other assorted desserts and appetizers.

Food and music are only a part of the festivities which will also include stilt walkers, balloon twisting, and more provided by Mel Rhea Balloon Creations. As always, Mardi Gras masks and beads will be available for all attendees.

This year, be sure to look for specialty Mardi Gras beads, including a limited supply of UK beads, available throughout the night.

Dr. Christopher Sperry, primary care physician with Mercy Primary Care – Paducah, will share a special story during the event on how important the Lourdes Foundation is to the Lourdes patients that he interacts with daily. 

Proceeds from the event help to improve clinical areas of Lourdes Hospital as well as providing excellence in care through technology and facility upgrades.

“Mardi Gras and All That Jazz supports the greatest needs of Lourdes Hospital,” said Jessica Toren, Lourdes Foundation President. “This year our efforts are dedicated to pediatric suites, an epilepsy monitoring unit, and support for our patients.”

The pediatric rooms will have bright paint colors, comfortable furniture for family members, and updated storage systems to provide a home like environment. The epilepsy monitoring unit will double the space currently used by Lourdes neurologists to diagnose and monitor epilepsy patients.

Proceeds will also benefit their Patient Mission Fund, which assists Lourdes patients with the greatest need for items such as medications, food, clothing, or even a ride home.

“Both of these projects are needed in our community and will help us support of our mission of building healthier communities through mind, body, and spirit,” explained Toren. “We are blessed to have the support of the community to help us fund the greatest needs of Lourdes hospital and its patients.  We look forward to hosting a fantastic Mardi Party for Lourdes Foundation supporters.”

This year’s event hopes to build off of the success of year’s past. Mardi Gras hit an impressive milestone last year, hitting the $1 million mark in total fundraising dollars since the annual event was established in 2003.

 Individual tickets will be sold at the door for $50. Corporate sponsorships are still available for $2,500 or $1,500, with the added benefit of reserved seating and special gifts. To arrange a sponsorship or purchase tickets, call Lourdes Foundation at 270.415.3992 or visit

This year’s Mardi Gras would not be possible without presenting sponsors: Ray Black & Sons, WPSD, Supply Solutions, US Bank, Paducah Bank, and Mercy Mission Partners; or the 2018 Mardi Gras planning committee: Leigh Ann Ballegeer, Melissa Clark, Cathy Crecelius, Cathy Elliot, Whitney Evans, Lisa Hancock, Heather Jackson, and Anna Vanderburg.

Mercy Health -Lourdes

Lourdes is part of Mercy Health, one of the largest Catholic healthcare ministries in the country. Lourdes’ faith-based Mission, values and promise form the cornerstones of its healthcare system. These bedrock beliefs unite its doctors, nurses and employees to strive to deliver the highest quality healthcare possible. Lourdes Hospital is a 359 licensed-bed facility accredited by The Joint Commission and was named as a Top Performer on Key Quality Measures by The Joint Commission. For more information, visit