Sunday, March 09, 2008

Guerrilla Radio: Lake Charles, LA

Welcome to "The Festival Capital of Louisiana!" Every year, this town of 70,000 residents holds more than 75 festivals. That's more than one festival for every 1,000 people. Imagine if New York had that kind of festival-to-citizen ratio. Or Mexico City or Tokyo. The world might fall off its axis.

Here in Lake Charles, they of course embrace the obvious festivals like Mardis Gras and the Southwest Louisiana Christmas Lighting Festival. But my personal favorite is Contraband Days. This raucous affair kicks off when an actor portraying pirate Jean Lafitte (see photo) sails into the port, captures the mayor and throws him into the actual lake of Lake Charles. What's not to love? -- Thomas