Fall festival season

It is definitely a Monday….I typed an entire post, only to have it disappear as I pressed “publish”.  Sigh.  Here’s the do-over.

A cool front arrived last week, and another one is dumping rain as I (re)type these words.  Ever so slightly cooler weather puts me in a festival mood–late September through November is prime outdoor food festival season in southern Louisiana.  Sure, summer festivals deliver great food and music, but I lose my appetite for outdoor festival foods in 95-degree weather.  Here’s a short list of my upcoming favorites, now that it’s cool enough to contemplate eating off of disposable ware under the sky:

  • Alligator Festival, Luling, LA, September 27, 28, 29, 30:  this festival’s setting–directly under the Hale Boggs Bridge across the Mississippi River–is part of the odd charm.  A fundraiser for the local Rotary Club’s scholarship fund, the Alligator Festival offers a mix of local groups and restaurants serving up alligator sauce piquante, alligator on a stick, gator sausage, and about a dozen other foods.  The festival is pitched mostly at locals, with a laidback, locals vibe.
  • Boudin Cook Off, Lafayette, LA, October 20:  More than 25 boudin makers gather in downtown Lafayette’s Parc Sans Souci to compete for bragging rights in traditional, specialty, and unlinked boudin categories, with official judging by an expert panel, as well as a people’s choice award.  Tasting samples are just 50 cents each–I dare you to get through $5 in samples!  Or, if that seems like an insignificant challenge, maybe you should compete in the boudin eating contest.
  • French Food Festival, Larose, LA, October 25, 26, 27, 28:   sample my family’s seafood gumbo at this festival, along with 20 other local favorites ranging from hogshead cheese, gratons, grillades, jambalaya, shrimp & oyster poboys, fried fish, to white beans, red beans, tartes a la bouillie, pralines, and more.  Free admission and free parking, with reasonable food prices, make this festival worth the drive “down the bayou”.  See the weekend’s music schedule here.

What’s your favorite fall festival?

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