Mardi Gras to be Celebrated in Iraq

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Military support organization Soldiers' Angels is planning a Mardi Gras party for deployed Louisiana troops.

For the second year in a row, Soldiers' Angels volunteers in Louisiana are sending Mardi Gras to deployed soldiers. This year, the supported unit will be the 244th Louisiana Guard out of Hammond, which is currently deployed to Iraq. If enough items are gathered, an additional Guard unit will be added.

Last year Louisiana Soldiers' Angels leader Greta Perry led a small-scale support effort, sending decorations and party supplies to the Louisiana Guard HSC 769th Engineering Battalion, deployed to Iraq. Operation Overseas Mardi Gras 2009 is being conducted in conjunction with the Louisiana Guard Family Readiness Support Assistant Anglia "Nikki" Ganey, and the goal is to send each one of the 320 soldiers in the 244th a box of Mardi Gras cheer.

Supporters around the country are encouraged to assemble a box of Mardi Gras cheer (U.S. Postal Service flat-rate boxes and APO form 29767-A are recommended). Suggested items to send include costumes and masks, decorations, Louisiana food, music, throws (items traditionally tossed from floats), and anything else that might give Louisiana soldiers a taste of home.

To send a box, email greta@soldiersangels.org for the mailing address. Shipping deadline is Februrary 7. For more information, see http://www.soldiersangelsla.org.

About Soldiers' Angels:
Established in 2003, Soldiers' Angels is a volunteer-based 501(c)(3) non-profit providing aid and comfort to the men and women of the United States Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard, as well as veterans and military families. For more information, see http://www.soldiersangels.org or call 626-529-5114. Tax ID# 20-0583415

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PATTI BADER
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