The Award Ceremony is when all of the races have ended and the big celebrations happen, and everyone gives a party to first place, second place, and third place.
In Super Mario Kart, a podium will appear under the top 3 racers' karts. A Cheep Cheep Balloon flies by and spews out a trophy based on the final placement of the player (for 2 players, the better performer of the two). The winner gets a pair of champagne bottles, and when he opens them, the cork pops the balloon which releases the gold trophy. Also, depending on the character, each one will do a special thing with the bottles, but that's too much to write down. If you lose, your character would be right next to the podium, crying.
In Mario Kart 64, all three best racers drive to Peach's Castle (in Royal Raceway) and park in front of it. All three suddenly rise up to a different level: the first is highest, the second is lower, and the third is lowest. fourth place is also seen in the background on the path. A sudden giant Cheep Cheep will slowly come down and spit out your trophy. They show the info about how you did and show you your trophy, and then you press the A button on your controller. If you do not win, the character will simply drive away from the ceremony while the music changes into minor chords. Afterward, a Mini Bomb Kart will appear as the music slows down, and blows up at the racer's kart. You will then receive a message: What a pity! You placed _th. Maybe next time!
In Mario Kart: Super Circuit, first, second, and third place will drive on Peach Circuit (with Peach's castle in the background) with a crowd of Goombas, Toads, Koopa Troopas, and Bob-ombs. Then, the leveled grounds fall down with first place again being the highest, second being middle high, and third being lowest. The giant Cheep Cheep comes and gives you your trophy (first time it doesn't blow away). If you placed 4th or below, your 4th place character will come to the screen before the leveled grounds squash you. None of the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd places jump to the grounds as the scene has ended from there, giving you the results screen instead.
In Mario Kart: Double Dash!!, the two racers sit in the Parade Kart, on the high first place seats. There are many people here. The second place racers drive by the Parade Kart, while the third place racers drive by and a little behind the Parade Kart and the 2nd place racers. The first, second, and third place winners will drive through Peach Beach, and drive out of Peach Beach, and hit an item box. A trophy will come flying out (this is the first Mario Kart not to feature the Cheep Cheep) and will show how you did and your trophy. If you lose, the camera will take video of the part when the racers come out to get their trophy, and some words pop up on the screen saying, "Now try again for another trophy." You hear some little crying, but mostly far away cheers, and you see alive flowers turn their heads.
In Mario Kart DS, the top three racers drive a lap around Figure-8 Circuit while celebrating. There are no leveled grounds. Then your info shows up. If you lose, a blue screen will appear and say "Now try for a trophy!"
In Mario Kart Wii, they have a faux race again. Then all three winners stand on their leveled grounds, like Mario Kart 64, but instead they are on the front road of Mario Circuit, and many people cheering on. Lakitu will appear when the camera zooms into the three winners. They will show you your trophy after the video, and your "how you did" info.
In Mario Kart 7, 2nd and 3rd place drive through the tunnel of Toad Circuit. First place will glide above the tunnel and in front of the other two racers. The celebration will start from 3rd place and 1st place will do a trick instead of cheering. Then, the results will show. If you scored fourth or below, the result screen will say "NICE TRY".
Mario Kart 8 is the first and so far only Mario Kart game to not have an award ceremony following the completion of a cup. Instead, Mario Kart TV will broadcast the player's (players' if Grand Prix was played in multiplayer mode) Highlight Reel in one of the races during the cup. A trophy is still rewarded to the player as well as a star ranking (if earned).