C’est pas juste une course! Tour du Teche IV gears up
“C’est pas juste une course!” means it’s not just a race. In fact, Tour du Teche IV is six races – with parties in-between!
Race 1: Tour du Teche is 135 miles from Port Barre to Berwick, the entire length of Bayou Teche plus short stretches of Bayou Courtableu and the Atchafalaya River at the start and finish.
The big race is done over three days, with a Friday stop at St. Martinville, 49 miles from the start; Saturday stop at Franklin, 59 miles from St. Martinville; and the Sunday finish line at Berwick, 27 miles from Franklin.
There will be a street dance at each stop along the way.
There are two divisions of Tour du Teche: Racing, which pays cash prizes; and Voyageur, in which recreational paddlers vie for trophies and bragging rights.
It’s Voyageurs only in the following “short” races:
Race 2: Ecrevisse (Crawfish) from Port Barre to Breaux Bridge (34 miles) Friday.
Race 3: Acadien (Acadian) Port Barre to St. Martinville (49 miles) Friday.
Race 4: Sauce Chaude (Hot Sauce) St. Martinville to New Iberia (24 miles) Saturday.
Race 5: Sucre (Sugar) St. Martinville to Franklin (59 miles) Saturday. For Voyageurs.
Race 6: Petrole et Essense (Oil & Gas) Franklin to Berwick (27 miles) Sunday. For Voyageurs.]
Tour du Teche is a four-parish celebration of natural beauty, adventure and diverse South Louisiana cultures, with food and music along the way. It’s a chance for spectators to cheer on paddlers from near and far, and to meet their coureurs des bois (bank runners) and their retinues, which has turned out to be one of the most rewarding aspects of this annual event.
Locally, Mayor Raymond Harris said, “The City of Franklin has always done a good job in preparing for its portion of Tour du Teche and the City of Franklin wants to make this one as great as the last.”
The mayor asks Franklinites to get into the spirit Saturday by making signs and coming to Parc sur la Teche on Teche Drive to cheer on the paddlers as they come to the finish line. Music will be provided by Johnny Chauvin and Mojo from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. behind the Blevins building.
Second, the mayor asks that businesses put signs in their windows to welcome the paddlers, their crews and families to Franklin.