Peter Manabani, an employee at the Rat’s Hole bar, said police had shut down a whole Bourbon Street block for an hour to investigate but allowed people to return to the area later.
Hours later on Sunday, there was little evidence that a shooting had occurred. Overnight revelers were in full party mode, packing the block amid a heavy police presence.
Laura Gonzalez, 21, of Baytown, Texas, said it was her first Mardi Gras, and she spent some time in the Fat Catz bar nearby as police investigated. She said the bar locked its doors quickly after the shots rang out and wouldn’t let anyone in or out while police went to the scene.
Asked if it was frightening, she responded: “Not really. We were just locked in a bar, and we weren’t going to let this one incident wreck our party.”
Parades rolled all day Saturday, but none on Bourbon Street because the streets are too narrow. One of the biggest Mardi Gras parades, the Krewe of Endymion, rolled down a major thoroughfare and just skirted Bourbon Street a few hours before the shooting. Typically, once the parades end, partygoers head to the French Quarter.