Queens chow down on catfish during eating contest

More than 35 pageant queens from across Louisiana competed last weekend to be named the fastest catfish eater.

The royalty attempted to eat three pieces of catfish the fastest without using their hands during the 36th Annual Louisiana Catfish Festival.

“The girls enjoyed the thrill of eating catfish and getting ketchup all over their faces,” said Amy Champagne, the contest organizer. “It looked like everybody had a good time.”

St. Charles Farm Bureau Teen Queen Abbie Chiasson, Festival of Charities Jr. Queen Haylie Lloyd and Miss Swamp Pop Music Festival Denise Moran were named the winners.

Moran, who has competed in other eating contests in her time as Miss Swamp Pop, said that the catfish eating competition was one of the best.

“This one was fun because everyone did it – usually some of the queens are scared,” she said.

Moran said she did not set out to win, but she added the catfish eating title to other food competitions that she has won in the past.

“If I win another title, I’ll definitely go again,” Moran said.

Visitors also enjoyed rides, music, races and raffles during the festival.

A raffle for a wooden replica of the Lombardi trophy by Landry Dempster that was signed by 25 Saints players drew a big crowd, and it was won by Mary Boudreaux. The festival ran out of raffle tickets after selling more than 3,300 for the trophy replica.


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