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Mardi Gras ("Fat Tuesday") is a Roman Catholic holiday marking the end of the season of Epiphany and the final day before the season of Lent. People feast and celebrate heavily, before Lent when they have to fast. The traditional Cajun Mardi Gras celebration differs greatly from the more well-known celebrations in New Orleans and other places.

A popular tradition on Mardi Gras in Acadiana is Courir de Mardi Gras. It is similar to traditions like mumming, wassiling, or the holiday of Halloween. Partcipants wear brightly colored costumes with masks and pointed hats. It is one the only times of the year people can wear such costumes because of state laws involving the Ku Klux Klan have prohibited people from wearing masks and pointed hats in public.

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