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Legal Briefs: Gainesville Ordinance Requires a Hands Only Approach to Eating Chicken

Published Wednesday, July 19, 2017

We all know Gainesville as the Poultry Capital of the World. With this title comes strict rules about eating chicken. In 1961, the City of Gainesville adopted an ordinance that chicken is a delicacy that can only be eaten with your hands.

The ordinance was put on the books as a publicity stunt to promote Gainesville as the Poultry Capital of the World. It has been effective. If you search online for strange U.S. laws, it most certainly will make the list.

The ordinance is for show only. The last time it was enforced was part of a practical joke on a 91-year-old Louisiana woman celebrating her birthday at a local restaurant. She was “arrested” by then Police Chief Frank Hooper and quickly “pardoned” by then Mayor Myrtle Figueras.


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