Contraband Days

LAKE CHARLES — Come out to the Lake Charles Civic Center the first weekend in May, Thursday-Sunday, May 4-7, to celebrate the Contraband Days Louisiana Pirate Festival’s 60th anniversary.

There will be music, carnival rides, pirates, fireworks, and of course, the landing of Jean Lafitte and his band of buccaneers with the mayor walking the plank.

For the 60th anniversary, Contraband Days is rolling out the welcome mat to the community with no admission fee for the one weekend festival, packed with the events. Festival goers can enjoy waterfront, music and entertainment for free.

Entertainment includes music by Strange Theories and Elm’s District on Thursday; Ron Fruge & Family and Knuckle Deep on Friday; Dean Manning, Rosedown Rockers, Willie, Waylon, Elvis & the Boys, Louisiana Express, Champagne Room and Cupid on Saturday; and Jeremy Fruge & the Zydeco Hot Boyz, Twangsters Union and Rusty Metoyer & the Zydeco Krush on Sunday.

“We decided to do something different for the 60th anniversary. For several years, we have considered having a one weekend event with everything packed into several days instead of spreading out the festival over two weeks. With this new change and in the spirit of celebration, we are presenting a free festival for the community to enjoy,” said Andy Grimes, Contraband Days, Inc., board president.

The festival also includes events such as the Children’s Costume Contest, Pirogue Building Contest, cook-offs and more.

With the official events taking place Thursday-Sunday, May 4-7, there will also be carnival rides the following weekend, and Contraband Days and O’Reilly Auto Parts will present the Seven Slot Society Jeep, Car & Truck Show on Saturday, May 13. Carnival rides will be available May 4-14.

For a full schedule of events, go to