Eau Claire’s Diner en Blanc

Diner en Blanc, also known as Diner in White, a top secret invitiation-only flash mob in Paris, France where 11,000 people dressed entirely in white clothes spontaneously set up tables and chairs in front of historic landmarks one night a year. The 2013 Diner en blanc, held on July 13, took place in the Louvre courtyard and by the Trocadero fountains in front of the Eiffel Tower. Photographed by Paris wedding and portrait photographer Stacy Reeves for vacation planning blog L

The Diner en Blanc in Paris–Eau Claire’s Diner doesn’t quite rival it yet, but we’re getting there…

Yesterday, my husband Paul, my friend Angie, and I attended Eau Claire’s third annual Diner en Blanc. The tradition of the Diner originated in France but quickly spread around the world. It’s a strange hybrid between a flash mob and a picnic. All the guests dress in white and bring picnics, complete with their own tables and table settings (all white, of course), and meet at a location that’s only disclosed immediately before the event. Everyone lines up their tables, sits down, and enjoys their meal. Then, they pack up and (at least in theory) leave the site looking as if they were never there.

Eau Claire's Diner en Blanc from a distance

Eau Claire’s Diner en Blanc from a distance

Organized by French ex-patriot Anne-Marie Bittner, better known as Nanou, our event represented a significant step toward making Eau Claire’s Diner en Blanc worthy of the one in Paris. Despite a major rainfall the day before, the evening was clear and sunny, not too hot and not too cool, and the river flowed tranquilly by us as we ate.

Nanou speaks to the masses before the dining commences.

Nanou speaks to the masses before the dining commences.

As enjoyable as the company was, a major part of the fun was studying the passers-by studying us as they tried to determine whether we were members of a wedding party or members of a cult. A few brave souls dared ask a diner, but most quickly averted their eyes and scuttled on their way–clearly, they’d concluded “Cult.”

Nanou patrolled the crowd regularly to make sure we were conducting a proper Diner.

Nanou patrolled the crowd regularly to make sure we were conducting a proper Diner.

Darkness fell, but miniature torches illuminated the last diners as they reluctantly began to disperse. All in all, it was a wonderful way to spend our evening. Plus, for the first time in my life, I wore a white shirt without staining it. Progress is being made on all fronts.

The Diner at dusk

The Diner at dusk




  1. Thank you for dishing out a different moment of unexpected beauty today. Enjoyed the picnic – and happy you left stain-free, quite an accomplishment at an all-white event. 😉

  2. maryann55@charter.net · · Reply

    Beautiful summary of a lovely evening, Rebecca. I am so happy to have had the opportunity to share it with you and Paul this year.

  3. That sounds like fun, although I’m pretty sure I couldn’t wear eithe without getting something down myself 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: