On 16 February, the French celebrate Mardi Gras, literally meaning Fat Tuesday. Originally a catholic celebration, this is a festival where people will eat richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of the Lent. In the past, children would dress up and visit different households in search of sweet desserts. The Mardi Gras marks the end of the festive period including Epiphany and Chandeleur and the start of the fasting period.
In modern France, Mardi Gras is widely celebrated in the country where kids dress up to go to school. This fest is particularly celebrated in the city of Dunkirk, in the north of France, with exuberance, noise and colours. Also known as ‘le Carnaval’, this season comes with huge public celebrations or parades, comprising of floats, colourful costumes, pageants, jugglers, magicians, stilt walkers, music, and dance. Children and adults alike participate in this festival as well by dressing up in anything you can think of. That is not all, Mardi Gras is also about the food! Crêpes, waffles, and beignets are widely enjoyed during this day.
Even though we do not celebrate this extensively in Singapore, we have provided you with a collage of photos from the carnival in Dunkirk for your viewing pleasure.