The chicken run kicked off the 21st annual Mardi Gras of Southeast Texas in Port Arthur on Thursday.
At 5 P.m., the chicken was released at Rosehill. The annual chicken release is the official start of Mardi Gras weekend.
Children of all ages scrambled to get their hands on the chicken. Only seconds after the chicken was released, it was caught and the Courir parade then began at Rosehill, then down Lakeshore drive and then through the gates of Procter Street.
12News rode on a float owned by a group of friends. Hundreds lined the streets Thursday waiting to catch as many beads as they could.
But, right outside the gates, 12News spoke to a Beaumont couple who has camped out for 20 years at Mardi Gras.
"We get together and cook and just socialize," says Linda Redding of Beaumont.
This year, the Redding's parked their RV outside the gates on Tuesday. They won't leave until Monday, the day after Mardi Gras ends.
"We're just always together, partying together, having food together, and just having a good time," says Redding.
Outside the trailer, the couple set up a place for their dogs and even brought a pit to cook food.
Redding says she will continue to come to Mardi Gras for years to come.
"I'll be here until I'm in a wheelchair," she says.
You can view the entire Mardi Gras weekend schedule at www.mardigras.portarthur.com.