Growing up in Kinder I am accustomed to another type of  Mardi Gras celebration.

It involves horses, chickens, masked riders, backroads, and burlap.

 

The traditional Mardi Gras celebration called le Courir de Mardi Gras a Cheval (the Mardi Gras run on horseback). The men ride the rural the countryside stopping at farm houses asking for donations of chickens, rice, onions, or any other  donattions for the gumbo that night.In order to get these donations the riders must dance and if a chicken is donated they must catch it.

 

 

 

 

The Capitaine is the man in charge of the run and he maintains control over the Mardi Gras. He issues instructions to the riders as they make their way on the run. When they arrive at a farm house, he obtains permission to enter private property, after which the riders may charge toward the house,

 

After the run ends the women begin cooking the gumbo, there is eating and more dancing and it all comes to an end at midnight because Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the Lenten Season.

This is the Mardi Gras I know.

 

Horace Trahan & Travis Matte playing at the Cassanova Lounge in Mamou in 1996.