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Bonjour to Bastille Day

Frances Boatwright
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Sarah Boatwright, Genevieve Boatwright, Frances Boatwright,

Pictured (from left) Sarah Boatwright, Genevieve Boatwright and Frances Boatwright enjoy a picnic by the Eiffel Tower in the summer of 2017. The Boatwright family enjoys celebrating Bastille Day and French culture at home, too. (Photo: Annette Boatwright)

On July 14, the grand French military will parade down Champs-Élysées avenue while Alpha Jets soar over the Arc de Triomphe, and fireworks dazzle from the Eiffel Tower. These festivities all honor La Fête nationale, or in English-speaking countries, Bastille Day. In case you are unfamiliar with this French holiday, it honors the new French Republic (for reference, it’s comparable to the 4th of July here).

The national celebration in France is marked by dancing, performances, parades and, of course, food. People all around the world take part in the fun, so even if you can’t celebrate in Paris, there are tons of ways to celebrate. Here are just a few ways you can get into the spirit of Bastille Day.

Houston Bastille Day Events

Spend your Sunday at one of the events honoring Bastille Day around Houston. Pick your favorite spot and join the excitement.

Rienzi (1406 Kirby Dr., Houston, TX 77019): Part of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Rienzi is a house museum for European decorative arts. Take a trip to Rienzi and enjoy a tour in French, make your own Eiffel Tower, or listen to a lecture focused on Napoleon’s art collection. The festivities will take place on July 14, 1-5 p.m. with $12 tickets for members and $15 tickets for non-members. 

Houston Polo Club (8552 Memorial Dr., Houston, TX 77024): Visit the Polo Club for a Bastille Day celebration on Saturday, July 13 at 7 p.m. to watch a polo game, stroll through the grounds, listen to music and enjoy food trucks! Tickets are $20 at entry. 

Sarah Boatwright, Genevieve Boatwright, Frances Boatwright,

Genevieve Boatwright, Sarah Boatwright and Frances Boatwright visit the impressive Arc de Triomphe in the summer of 2017. (Photo: Annette Boatwright).

Enjoy a French meal

Incorporate a French meal or dessert into your Sunday to celebrate the culture of Bastille Day. Making a homemade dish is the perfect way to join the festivities: 

Crêpes: Whether sweet or savory, you can’t go wrong with homemade crêpes. My family often makes crêpes for breakfast or dessert, filling them with anything from strawberries and whipped cream to spinach and mushroom. Here’s our favorite recipe for easy crêpes to make at home.

Quiche: Hot or cold, salty or sweet, this French dish is quintessential for a Bastille Day breakfast. Follow our family's favorite recipe.

Houston Restaurants Celebrating Bastille Day: 

Many French restaurants in Houston offer a Bastille celebration, including: 

Etoile Cuisine Et Bar (1101-11 Uptown Park Blvd., Houston, TX 77056): Located in Uptown Houston, Etoile Cuisine Et Bar will serve a set four-course dinner beginning at 7 p.m. on July 14. Taste a variety of French flavor and savor this decadent meal.

Brasserie du Parc (1440 Lamar, Houston, TX 77010): Near Discovery Green, savor a brunch from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. or the three-course Fête De La Bastille Dinner beginning at 4 p.m. Enjoy live music throughout the day!

Rise (1700 Post Oak Blvd. #290, Houston, TX, 77056): Rise serves souffles all year round, but this French influenced bistro saves a special celebration for Bastille Day. With French decorations and a famous Cherry Clafoutis, Rise Bistro is the perfect place for lunch or dinner.

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