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Beignet Fest is Oct. 8

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What could be sweeter than staging a festival to raise funds for children with autism? Make the featured food item a beignet, add live music and let visitors vote on their favorite version of the doughnut.

  The festival is scheduled for Oct. 8 at Lafayette Square. Admission is free and a portion of proceeds from food and beverage sales benefits the Tres Doux Foundation, an organization from founders Amy and Sherwood Collins seeking to raise awareness and provide funds for autism programs in New Orleans.

  "Through our journey with our son, Liam, who is on the autism spectrum, we found out there's a gap in accessible programming for kids on the spectrum, and we wanted to change that," Amy said in a prepared statement.

  The festival will feature both sweet and savory versions of the iconic fried dough confection prepared by local restaurants including Cafe Du Monde, Ye Olde College Inn, The Ruby Slipper, Cafe Beignet and New Orleans Coffee & Beignet Co., as well as Bread & Circus of Lafayette.

  Festivalgoers can cast a vote for their favorite beignet in several categories, including best sweet, best savory, most original and crowd favorite.

  Music will be provided by Big Sam's Funky Nation, John "Papa" Gros, Los Po-Boy-Citos, The Confetti Park Players Children's Chorus and Alexandra Scott.

  The festival runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, visit www.beignetfest.com.

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