Rayne Frog Festival
Hi! My name is Hop and I'm a frog that lives in Rayne, Louisiana. Rayne is a small town in Acadia Parish which is a hop, skip, and a jump away from New Orleans. Any frog is welcome to this lily pad. However, we must be careful because in Rayne our leaping legs might just end up on a dinner plate. This town loves frogs like myself so much that they have a festival to celebrate us. This festival is held every Labor Day weekend.
Have you ever been to the Frog Festival in Rayne? Some frogs may like it and then again some may not. Well one thing is for sure, people sure do. When you go to this very unique festival you are in for a leaping good time. At the start of the festival, there is a World Champion Frog Jumping Contest, or around Rayne you might hear "fais do-do." There is also an outstanding fireworks display. At the festival there are carnival rides that children enjoy. There is a Lion's Club Frog Derby. This is a strange contest because little girls dress up frogs and then sees which frog jumps the farthest. They also have frog eating contests. Can you believe that? There is a queen's contest where they crown a Miss Rayne. There is a Pet-R-Pet, which is a hands-on petting zoo. There is also good food and great music.
Let me tell you how my kinfolks and I got so "hoppening" in this town. It all started in the 1880s when Donat Pucheu, a gourmet chef decided to sell bullfrogs to restaurants in New Orleans. Then two men called the Weill Brothers,from France, created a frog exportation business that sold frogs from Rayne to restaurants. This made Rayne a popular place. Rayne's population increased when the International Rice Festival asked Rayne to host the first frog derby. After that it all became history. Thank goodness, Rayne doesn't export anymore but it's froggy identity is bigger than ever.
With 8,700 inhabitants Rayne is the second largest city in Acadia Parish. Rayne is known as the "Frog Capital of the World." Not only does Rayne have a festival for frogs but many of the building have paintings of frogs on them.