The Divine Protectors of Endangered Pleasures was established at an inaugural luncheon at Arnaud's Restaurant in 2002 with what was to become an annual Promenade on Bourbon and Royal Streets in divinely beaded costumes. The DIVAs, their Elvi and their brass band provide a spirited and colorful show for all the citizens of their Protectorate.
In 2002, 26 DIVAs lunched in the main dining room at Arnaud’s, enjoying the excitement of the restaurant patrons as they entered and caught sight of the group. With membership more than doubled since their first lunch, the group now meets upstairs and displays themselves for adoration from the Bourbon Street balcony.
The focal point, or focal points, is the elaborately crafted beaded bustiers for which the DIVAs are known. The bustier, which must be hand- made, begged, borrowed or stolen, is a prerequisite for membership in the Divine Protectors.
On Arnaud's upstairs balcony, the DIVAs begin with the music of the Riverside Ramblers Brass Band while throwing beads and other trinkets to the adoring crowd. The Mayors of the cities of Covington and New Orleans, Louisiana have issued proclamations formally naming "DIVA Day" in honor of the Divine Protectors.
The Count’s Ballroom is the location of a sumptuous feast. Annually official proclamations are read by the resurrected Elvis, attended by his Elvis clones. The Divine Instigator makes her formal address to the assembled Krewe. The Divine Directors are then presented. The Divine Directors announce their DIVAs. Each DIVA subsequently struts her finery for all to admire.
At the Divine Instigator’s signal, the Promenade begins. Lead by the Riverside Ramblers and chaperoned by Elvi, the DIVAs proceed to march, dance, careen, stumble and tap dance their way through a parade route that includes a stop at Pat O’Brien’s patio bar.
Continually trailing the divinities are always a retinue of fans, journalists, paparazzi, stalkers, college boys, tourists and drunks. The Annual DIVA Promenade then ends back at Arnaud’s where it all began. The Divine Protectors of Endangered Pleasures once again show exactly what they are protecting, and it can safely be said that a good time is always had by all.