It is Shrove Tuesday, Pancake Tuesday, Fat Tuesday, or Mardi Gras!
I suspect that this is another one of those holidays that has been taken over by the church and yet predates Christianity. If you know its earlier origins, please let me know.
This is a pancake race in Great Britain.
Pancakes are associated with the day preceding Lent because they were a way to use up rich foods such as eggs, milk, and sugar, before the fasting season of the 40 days of Lent. The liturgical fasting emphasized eating plainer food and refraining from food that would give pleasure: in many cultures, this means no meat, dairy products, or eggs.
In Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom, Ireland and New Zealand the day is also known as “Pancake Day” as it is a common custom to eat pancakes as a meal.
In Newfoundland small tokens are frequently cooked in the pancakes. Children take delight in discovering the objects, which are intended to be divinatory. For example, the person who receives a coin will be wealthy; a nail that they will become or marry a carpenter.
And, of course, there are tattoos:
Celebrate the day with pancakes, jambalaya, a slice of King cake, and a hurricane!