Home » ‘Coming, sir!’ – Celebrate Bastille Day with food, drink, Waiters’ Race
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‘Coming, sir!’ – Celebrate Bastille Day with food, drink, Waiters’ Race

A participant in the 2012 Waiters’ Race

Calling all waiters, servers and professional food-bringers – it’s time to prove you’re the creme fraiche of the crop and compete for the ultimate gratuity.

The 4th Annual Waiters’ Race pits Sacramento servers against one another in a speed-walking race. Participants must carry a tray with a Perrier bottle and water glasses, all while decked out in full French-inspired waiter garb.

The Waiters’ Race became a part of Bastille Day celebrations in France. These celebrations have since expanded across the globe as other cities honor the historical French holiday. Over 800 separate Waiters’ Races occur around the world on Bastille Day.

Sacramento’s race is organized by the Handle District, located on L and 18th streets.

“We are trying to keep the tradition of the Waiters’ Race alive,” said Monique Vieira, a member of the Bastille Day committee and organizer for the event.

While the winners of most races are the first to cross the finish line, participants are judged a little more strictly at the Waiters’ Race. They not only have to be quick, but also attentive to their trays. The three men and three women to cross the finish line with dry trays will receive generous gift certificates to French Laundry, Bistro Michel, and Cafe Rolle.

Only 50 of Sacramento’s servers will be admitted to the race, and those who qualify can apply to enter here.

Spectators will get to experience a full day of Bastille Day activities, including face-painting and balloon animals for the little ones, free food samples from local restaurants, and happy-hour-priced beer, wine, and cocktails for the adults.

“The event is geared towards all ages,” said Vieira, “very family-friendly.”

For those looking for a longer trek, a 50-mile bike ride will begin at 8:00 a.m. in the Handle District, and follow a route up the American River Parkway and back. Ticket and route information are available here. Proceeds from the ride will go to the Sacramento Area Bicycle Advocates.

The Bastille Day festival will be held on Sunday, July 14th, in the Handle District on L and 18th. The bike ride begins at 8:00 a.m. The family-friendly festivities will be from 11:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., with the Waiters’ Race taking off at 12:00 p.m.


Sponsored Link: Consider taking Regional Transit to events downtown at the Handle District and elsewhere. Plan your RT trip online.


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