There’s nothing quite like a Mardi Gras celebration, and Louisiana’s 1st Choice Auto Auction (LAFCAA) is adding a festival flair to its "Rockin’ Mardi Gras Party and Sale," set for Monday and Tuesday, February 4-5.  Combining the sight, sounds and tastes of Mardi Gras with a 900-plus vehicle auction, LAFCAA expects customers from far and wide to join them for the celebration, and to bid on a record number of vehicles in the auction lanes.

The celebration begins at 6pm on Monday evening, February 4 with a Rockin’ Mardi Gras Party, which will be held at Chesterton Square in nearby Ponchatoula. Guests will enjoy a buffet featuring the best of Cajun cuisine, including fried catfish, bacon-wrapped shrimp, and crawfish pasta.  Taking the stage at the party will be the Cronkites, a band of renown in the auction world, headed by auction veteran Greg Mahugh. Following the Cronkites, guests will rock out to the sounds of Bag of Donuts, a popular New Orleans band.

LAFCAA’s Rockin’ Mardi Gras Sale begins at 8:30 am the next day, Tuesday, February 5.  The auction expects to see more than 900 vehicles crossing the block, including vehicles from featured consignor Santander Consumer.  The auction also expects the enthusiastic participation of a number of its dealer consignors, including Ray Brandt Group, Murphy Cadillac, Giles Automotive, Z Best Cars, Supreme Group, Anderson Subaru, Premier Group, Leson Chevrolet, All Star Group, Banner Group, Walt Massey Automotive, Herrin Gear, Butch Oustalet and other quality consignors.

“We expect our Rockin’ Mardi Gras Party and Sale to be an event that our customers will be talking about for a long time to come,” says John Poteet, LAFCAA’s managing partner.  “From the food, drink and music on Monday night to the king cakes and gumbo being served on Tuesday in the lanes, we’ll be celebrating Mardi Gras in a big way.  In grand Mardi Gras tradition, we even have custom beads for our customers that will earn them extra John Dough if they wear them to the sale!”

John Dough is a customer rewards program unique to LAFCAA.  Throughout the year, the auction awards John Dough Dollars for buying and selling activity and special promotions.  The John Dough is used to bid on items at John Dough Gift Auctions held twice a year, in May and December.

Poteet notes that his staff is eager to show off some recent improvements to the auction facility as they welcome customers to the Rockin’ Mardi Gras Sale. 

“Just before Christmas we unveiled a 3,000 square foot office expansion that is already resulting in smoother sale day transactions and a better working environment for everyone,” notes Poteet, adding that the auction also completed a paving project that added 50 more spaces for customer parking and an additional 100 spaces for consignment parking.  Fiber optics have also been put in place in a move to upgrade the facility’s technological tools, and now all four auction lanes are equipped for simulcast selling.

“Now in our eleventh year, we’re proud of the way we’ve changed and grown, and we’re looking forward to celebrating our success and the excitement of Mardi Gras with our customers in February,” Poteet said. 

Opened in May of 2002, Louisiana’s 1st Choice Auto Auction sells on four auction lanes every Tuesday. The auction uses several state-of-the-art industry solutions to serve its customers, including Auto IMS inventory management system, Auction Access dealer database program, and the Auction Edge suite of technology services.  In 2011 the auction was named top provider in its region for ARI, as part of ARI’s Partner’s in Excellence Awards.