Thousands return to the Fair Grounds with their best creations for the annual Thanksgiving tradition

Thousands return to the Fair Grounds with their best creations for the annual Thanksgiving tradition

NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) - Thousands came out with their most creative hats and outfits for Thanksgiving at the Fair Grounds.

The family event has people coming back every year.

"It's great to see everybody, and see old friends you haven't seen in a long time as well," Kuill Cole said.

There's a lot to see--from the horses to the DIY hats.

"I thrifted the dress and the overcoat a couple months ago, and I wore it for a thing, and I opened my closet and I saw it sitting there, and then I turned my head around and I saw white mannequin head, and I was like oh, there, yea, that's the thing," Cole said.

"My outfit's a designer piece by myself. I made it. These are my lovely friends from my dead roommate," Rodney Griffin said.

Others dressed to the theme of the Saints vs. Falcons game.

"We're gonna meet up with some friends, and have a Friendsgiving and have some falcon," Midge Howe said.

This year marks the 148th Thanksgiving at the tracks, and the start of the thoroughbred racing season.

"For the last couple years, we had started a week before, but we decided to go back and make it a traditional opening day at the races on Thanksgiving Day. So today marks that change and milestone," Doug Shipley, Fair Grounds Race & Slots President said.

Liz Lamartina said it's her first time at the Fair Grounds for Thanksgiving, and she's ready to win big.

“I have to have my horse because it’s Thanksgiving, and I am gonna win on everything. I’ll have my tip sheet right here, and I have all this located,” Liz Lamartina said.

The costumes range from satirical, to making a statement.

"The theme of my hat is biodiversity. I'm a conservation biologist, and I really care about the fate of biodiversity, especially in the fate of climate change," one spectator said.

No matter the occasion, most New Orleanians won't pass up the chance to get dressed up.

“To us, it’s like the Mardi Gras of the fall, so everyone comes out, you see a lot of people you haven’t seen in a couple months. It’s just great fun out here,” Howe said.

“It’s nice to come to a costume event with a little bit of class so we can put our blazers on. A little classier than Mardi Gras for the most part, so it’s fun,” Sam Van Tasel said.

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