Runners and revelers work to rid Detroit of Nain Rouge

Runners and revelers work to rid Detroit of Nain Rouge

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DETROIT (myFOXDetroit.com) -

The Marche du Nain Rouge Sunday brought more than 3,000 revelers and a band of runners to Detroit's Cass Corridor.

The fourth annual festival and parade celebrated Detroit's folkloric tradition of banishing the "Nain Rouge," or red dwarf, who has haunted Detroit for more than 300 years.

This year's event featured an added bonus. The first-ever 5K Run Du Nain Rouge took place at 11 a.m. at the corner of Cass and Canfield in Midtown.

All the post-race festivities began at Traffic Jam & Snug's parking lot at 1 p.m. Thousands gathered to chant and taunt the Nain Rouge, who decided to make an appearance!

The Marche procession led the revelers through North Cass Corridor and down Cass Avenue, with an unprecedented effort to rid Detroit of the Nain Rouge. The ghosts of Detroit's past, followed by the Detroit Party Marching Band, led the procession.

Revelers ended their march and banished the Nain Rouge on Temple Street.

The Marche du Nain Rouge is rooted in Detroit's early history, when Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac founded Detroit and was confronted by the Nain Rouge. He purportedly hit the Nain Rouge with his cane and became cursed for life.

Since then, the Nain Rouge has been spotted throughout Detroit's history, usual at the city's most notorious occurrences.

The event was re-ignited in 2010 when 400 Detroiters gathered to continue a lost tradition - to march the Nain Rouge out of Detroit on the Spring Equinox.

The carnival-esque festival calls for all Detroiters to don costumes that mask themselves in front of the Nain Rouge and represent the effigy they want to shed.

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