Mardi Gras - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. One of the fun things about going to college in New Orleans was the annual Mardi Gras celebration. Fat Tuesday, also known as Shrove Tuesday, the day before Ash Wednesday, is the last big party before the Lenten season. One of the most frightening lines of my Catholic upbringing was always: "What are you giving up for Lent?" I never wanted to give up anything, and I had a little game with my parents in which I tried to get them to think I really liked something I hated, so that I could "give it up" for Lent. In any event, IMHO, every day should be lived responsibly; but, with a little Mardi Gras fervor built in. Life is short. Party on.