Dates: Feb 17 - 21 2023
This five-day celebration is not your typical idea of Mardi Gras. There are no beads and doubloons here. Instead, in Eunice, Louisiana, men and women on horseback don hand-crafted wire masks, tall hats called capuchons, and colorful costumes. The main event is the Courir de Mardi Gras & Chicken Run. Here, revelers chase a chicken or guineafowl and participate in Medieval begging practices.
The courir takes place on Mardi Gras day and is only one part of the celebration. Starting the Friday before Mardi Gras Day, you can cut loose all weekend long. Dance in the street at music concerts and jam sessions. There are even activities for children and teenagers at the Lil’ Mardi Gras held on Sunday. Also on Sunday is an old-time boucherie (hog butchering).
The Eunice Courir de Mardi Gras dates back to when the town was first established in the late 19th century. The courir was abandoned for a few years during World War II, but in 1946 a small band of riders revived the tradition. Today, the Eunice Courir de Mardi Gras has more than 2,000 participants on the run. It continues to increase each year.