22 February 2014

22 February 2014                                                                                  Photo: Langelle

LaBelle, FL – The main feature of LaBelle’s annual Swamp Cabbage Festival appeared to be the Armadillo Races (armadillo far left center). These races drew huge and rowdy crowds that laid bets on whichever armadillo managed to amble his or her way down the short track to the finish line. There also were gator burgers and swamp cabbage fritters to eat, plus a wide assortment of vendors, exhibiting everything from ‘Made in America’ dresses to t-shirts displaying pistol graphics with the proclamation, “Welcome to Florida. Over 4 Million Of Us Have Concealed Carry Permits – Please Enjoy Your Visit.”

One of the armadillo handlers told me this might be the last year of the armadillo races as PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) has threatened to shut them down.  The armadillo handler said the races were the main funding source for LaBelle’s Rotary Club.