Free to See: 20 U.S. Weird and Wacky Events

These events—a Bigfoot festival and a shopping cart race among them—are just too odd to miss. Get a sneak peek of our weird and wacky list below, then find all 20 online. Plus, we want to hear from you. Tell us about another odd festival or event in the comments section below.

East Coast Kinetic Sculpture Race Baltimore, Maryland

One of the world’s more unusual races involves kinetic sculptures, attractive works of art that must also be human-powered and amphibious in order to compete on a 15-mile course along the shores of Baltimore’s Inner Harbor and into the Chesapeake Bay. The race has been run every May for 13 years, backed by the American Visionary Art Museum, where such sculptures are on display year-round.

The Idiotarod Various Locations

It’s not a typo. It’s a shopping cart race. More specifically, it’s a series of shopping cart races—held in North American cities from Asheville to Vancouver—in which teams of costumed idiots use trickery and guile (such as they possess) to speed their creative contraptions through city streets.

The Wayne Chicken Show Wayne, Nebraska

This Nebraska festival was hatched (sorry) in 1981 and has grown into an enormous, lighthearted celebration of all things chicken. It begins with All Hen’s Eve (Henoween) and includes chicken humor, chicken games, chicken costumes, chicken dancing, and, naturally, a chicken dinner.

Lower Keys Underwater Music Festival Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary

Handel never saw this kind of “water music” coming, but each summer in the Florida Keys, selections ranging from “Yellow Submarine” to humpback whale songs are piped underwater for an unforgettable acoustic experience. Hundreds of divers and snorkelers tune in on a beautiful coral reef in the National Marine Sanctuary, where celebrity attendees like the Snorkeling Elvises are a traditional part of the scene.

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Help us build our list! Tell us about a free wacky & weird event near you. Leave the details in the comments section below.

Photo by Tom Jones,

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  1. richard hagler
    Weirs Beach, NH
    January 16, 2012, 11:23 am

    The Annual Rubber Duckie Race
    Thousands of Rubber Ducks pour over a small dam. Charity event where the winner gets half the pot.
    held over 4th of July weekend.

    Christmas on the River
    Demopolis, Ala
    Boats lit up with the holiday lights held just before Christmas every year.

  2. killian jock
    daytona beach fl
    November 30, 2011, 9:58 am

    damn dat some crazzzzzy ride wow i cant lie i would do dat (: