If you are from Lake Charles or the Southwest Louisiana area, you know how special Contraband Days was back in the 1980 and 1990s. It was the largest festival in the state of Louisiana, second only to Mardi Gras.

At its height, Contraband Days was a festival attended by more than a half a million people in the 14 days it ran through each year. The festival took place on the grounds of the Lake Charles Civic Center and the seawall.

Hundreds of boats would line the seawall and the lake. It was like a secondary festival out on the water. Contraband Days was full of great food, carnival rides, games, and great local and national live entertainment.

Everyone in the lake area looked forward to the first two weeks of May every year because it was when the entire Southwest Louisiana area came together and also saw tourists from all over the country visiting.

Our buddy, Jimmy Parton, who has shared other videos with us like famous graves of Lake Charles celebrities and the crazy story of how Lake Charles was named, has sent us another interesting video.

However, this time, Jimmy is not narrating the video. Instead, he is taking us back 32 years to Contraband Days 1988. This video you are going to watch shows all the boats that would flood the lakefront and the packed seawall full of festival goers from VHS tapes in Parton's family collection.

The video shows the fun people had on the water at Contraband Days and even has footage from the ever-popular boat races they used to have. Let's go back in time and relive Contraband Days 1988.

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