For Immediate Release 

Shelley Johnson, executive director
Megan Hartman, senior marketing manager

Mardi Gras Gumbo Cook-off, Omega Parade, Zydeco Dance and More!

LAKE CHARLES, La. (December 18, 2012)-The public tastes from every pot of chicken and sausage or wild game gumbo in a hot contest of more than 40 teams at noon on Saturday, Feb. 9, at the Lake Charles Civic Center Exhibition Hall from 8 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Amateur and professional teams will stir up hundreds of gallons of rich, spicy gumbo and serve it at the Cajun Extravaganza and Gumbo Cook-off, which is a Mardi Gras tradition among krewes, professionals and amateurs in Southwest Louisiana. The event is a must-be-there mix of award winning food, floor-stomping music, and the down-home spirit of Mardi Gras.

Gumbo contestants begin cooking at 7:30 a.m., and judging is at noon with gumbo served immediately afterward until 2 p.m. In addition to scrumptious food, there will be festive, live music.

There are two categories: chicken and sausage, and wild game, and there are amateur and professional divisions. Admission is $5, and gumbo-lovers will be able to sample from all the different gumbo pots.

Also on Saturday, Feb. 9, at the Lake Charles Civic Center, you can enjoy the 47th Annual Krewe of Omega Parade at 2 p.m. followed by the Krewe of Barkus Parade at 3 p.m. and the Zydeco Dance from 3 - 5 p.m. with live music from Lil' Wayne and Same Ol 2 Step.

Mardi Gras of Southwest Louisiana would not be possible without the help of generous sponsors including the Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana Convention & Visitors Bureau, L'Auberge Casino Resort, KPLC, Thrive, and AdSource Outdoor Advertising.

For more information on the gumbo cook-off, contact Katie Harrington at (337) 526-9009. For all other Mardi Gras events, visit or contact the Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana Convention & Visitors Bureau at (337) 436-9588.