BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana's state political scene is heading north for a few days, to celebrate Mardi Gras in the nation's capital city.

Gov. John Bel Edwards, state lawmakers, other elected officials, lobbyists and business leaders are traveling for the annual tradition that is Washington Mardi Gras — a time of celebrating, mingling and politicking that takes place a few weeks before Fat Tuesday.

Several thousand people head to Washington for the celebration each year. Edwards will be there Wednesday through Sunday.

The party, in its eighth decade, is hosted by the Mystick Krewe of Louisianians , currently captained by Republican U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise.

Louisiana's congressional delegation is at the center of Washington Mardi Gras, which includes two signature events: a Friday night formal dinner and Saturday night ball and indoor parade.