You can bite it off in one big chunk of three days, four parties and 135 miles. Or you can take it in one of several smaller, day-long races, albeit each one a marathon in its own right.
On Friday, Oct. 7, at 7 a.m., when TDT II kicks off in Port Barre, so will the Crawfish and the Acadian Trail.
The Crawfish is a 34-mile “sprint” to Breaux Bridge designed to be the world’s longest marathon for pirogues. There are classes for kayaks and canoes, too.
The Acadian is 48 miles to St. Martinville, where the festivities after the first leg of TDT will be held.
Starting in St. Martinville on Saturday morning, Oct. 8, along with the TDT racers will be entrants in the Hot Sauce and Sugar races. Hot Sauce is 25 miles to New Iberia, Sugar is 60 miles to Franklin.
And from Franklin on Sunday, Oct. 9, along with the racers in the final leg of TDT will be the start of the Oil & Gas, 27 miles to the overall finish line at the iconic red lighthouse in the city park on the Atchafalaya River in Berwick.
The registration fee is $110 per paddler for the three stage-long races, the Acadian, Sugar and Oil & Gas, and $100 for the Crawfish and Hot Sauce. It includes supper and breakfast before the race, and another meal afterwards, along with T-shirt and cap. One coureur de bois per boat also receives meal tickets and T-shirt and cap. Coureurs de bois do not pay an entry fee.
Prizes will be whatever local businesses and community organizations want to put up. For example, in the Crawfish the Kiwanis Club de Pont Breaux is putting up $100 for the first solo pirogue and $100 for the first tandem pirogue. The City of Breaux Bridge is putting up $100 for the first female, and Scout Fence Company will give $100 to the first Vietnam veteran to reach Breaux Bridge.
In the Acadien, the St. Martinville Rotary Club will pay $100 to the first senior (50 and older per United States Canoe Association rules) to reach St. Martinville.
Another fun thing is the radar gun “speed trap.” (NOTE: Not being manned by state District Judge Paul deMahy as erroneously reported previously.) Fastest boat clocked entered in the Acadian will receive $100, and in Tour du Teche $600 from St. Martin Sheriff Ronny Theriot’s Community Projects Fund. Should be an exciting finish in St. Martinville!
Sponsorships are open for the Hot Sauce, Sugar and Oil & Gas. All races are part of the Teche Project, a 501 C(3) corporation and as such all donations are tax deductible. The fiscal sponsor for Tour Du Teche is Community Foundation of Acadiana, also a 501 C(3) Corporation.
Sponsorship checks should be made payable to:
Community Foundation of Acadiana
1035 Camellia Blvd.
Lafayette, LA 70508
Memo: Tour du Teche.
Tour du Teche II, a three-day staged race down the entire length of Bayou Teche from Port Barre to Berwick, is sponsored by Teche Federal Bank, Chevron and Teche News. Individual stages are sponsored by Cypress Bayou Casino and Pellerin Funeral Homes.
For more information, go to www.techeproject.com and click on the Tour du Teche drop-down menu.