events fundraisers Mardi Gras

Meet the Budweiser Clydesdales at the Horses, Hops & Cops fundraiser

The Clydesdales run in the paddock at the NOPD stables at City Park during their 2022 visit for Mardi Gras. (Dinah Rogers, Mid-City Messenger file photo)

The Budweiser Clydesdales will be in town for Mardi Gras, and the public will have the chance to meet them at the 13th annual Horses, Hops & Cops fundraiser in City Park.

The Louisiana Hospitality Foundation and Budweiser will be hosting the fundraiser on Wednesday, Feb. 8.

The free annual event helps  raise money for the New Orleans Police Department’s Mounted Unit through sponsorships, concession sales, raffle tickets, VIP experience tickets, photo sales and other donations.

“Funding from Horses, Hops & Cops is critical to the success of the NOPD’s Mounted Unit,” interim NOPD Superintendent Michelle Woodfork said in a press release on Tuesday (Jan. 24). “Our stable of horses is aging, and we need to bring in new young horses to augment the unit.”

Handler Grant Johnson gives Ivan a neck rub at the paddock fence. While half the 10-horse herd exercises, the others get a bath, brush down and shave. (Dinah Rogers, Mid-City Messenger file photo)

This year, the fundraiser will feature live music with The Wiseguys, an equestrian soccer game pitting the NOPD against the Sheriff’s Office, kids’ activities, food and beverage vendors, and the opportunity to meet and greet the Budweiser Clydesdales. A professional photographer will be on hand to take photos of participants with the famous draught horses.

A raffle will also be held with the chance to win two passes to parade with the Krewe of Argus on Mardi Gras Day and ride on the Budweiser Clydesdales Wagon or a Night Out featuring a pair of tickets to a Saenger Theater show with limousine transportation from American Luxury Limousines.

A limited number of VIP experiences are also available for purchase, both for children and adults. The VIP Experience will offer extended tours of the event and NOPD stables and a gift bag provided by event sponsors.

Horses, Hops & Cops will be held at 1021 Harrison Ave. in New Orleans City Park from 5 to 8 p.m. and is free for everyone.

For more information or to purchase the VIP experience, visit

Dalmatians Merri and Lillie hang out in a stall at the NOPD stables in City Park. The dog breed historically was used to protect the beer wagons and their horses, and are today the official mascot of the Budweiser Clydesdale.(Dinah Rogers, Mid-City Messenger file photo)

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