The Town of Mansura
Mansura is a city in Avoyelles Parish where American Indian, French, Spanish and English cultures came together long ago, and where you'll find one of the best examples of Louisiana cuisine — anywhere. The Mansura region was settled in the late 1700s while still under Spanish rule. The city itself, formerly known as "Prairie des Avoyelles," was allegedly named by early French settlers — soldiers who fought alongside Napoleon himself — and who thought Mansura resembled an Egyptian town of a similar name (Mansoura), which Napoleon's army passed through. These days, Mansura is best known for its cuisine. Specifically, cochon de lait, a smoked pork dish that is honored every year with the Cochon de Lait Festival. At this annual bash, held early in May, cochon is celebrated with big helpings of food, plus carnival-style rides and the truly unforgettable greasy pig contest and hog-calling competition.