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Today, as Spain wraps up the third day of its annual, nine-day Running of the Bulls festival in Pamplona, New Orleans readies for tomorrow’s Encierro, its own version of Iberia’s wild street fest – except this one involves no bucking beasts.
Where Pamplona employs angry bulls to storm through the calles, New Orleans brings in the Big Easy Roller Girls (plus skaters from select other derby teams) to glide through the Crescent City’s skinny streets.
About 300 skaters – each decked out in red, donning bull horns-topped hats, and swinging baseball bats – race through the French quarter and chase the some 8,000 runners (dressed in the traditional white with red sashes) who show up for the festival. And yes, the so-called RollerBulls do sometimes whack people with the bats (though mostly men, we’re told).
Fairly soon the festive streets of New Orleans will be strewn with beads, masks, and doubloons. Luckily, some deal-savvy visitors will have the chance to revel in the celebrations at one of the most prominent hotels in the French Quarter – the AAA 3-Diamond Prince Conti Hotel is offering rates starting from $58 in March, and $50 if you can make it down there for the last days of February. The 76-guestroom property also provides complimentary Internet access and free accommodations for children ages 12 or under!
THE VALUE: The Prince Conti Hotel is a short walk from Bourbon Street, Jackson Square, Louis Armstrong Park, and the French Market.
THE CATCH: Rates are sold out for March 5 and 6, and rise to $269 March 7.
THE DETAILS: Visit the Prince Conti Hotel and select Special Rates on the left to view availability.
WE’VE GOT MORE: Use our Travel Search price comparison tool to find cheap flights to the Big Easy.
Visit our New Orleans Travel Guide for more trip-planning tips and information.
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