Places that are rich in history and creative talent—and are also preservation-minded—are bound to have many sites that display these attritubes for all to see. Louisiana is such a place. The state treasures its long history and values the ongoing artistic contributions of its many talented citizens. The result is an abundance of museums, galleries and historic structures that preserve and exhibit the state's most valued assets for anyone who chooses to see them.
Morgan City's unforgettably named Louisiana Shrimp and Petroleum Festival on Labor Day weekend is a dual celebration of its prime industries. But throughout the year visitors can easily see the impact of the oil and seafood businesses on this city in the middle of the Atchafalaya River's massive delta. Even in the heart of Morgan City's 19-block historic center, recognized as part of the state's Main Street Program, one can climb the flood barrier known locally as the Great Wall for a bird's eye view of the industrial vessels and shrimp boats plying the busy river before sampling a Cajun-style treatment of the fresh shellfish at a local restaurant. Tour a historic drilling rig and learn about Louisiana's ties to the industry at the International Petroleum Museum or get a close encounter with the area's natural heritage at the Swamp Gardens & Wildlife Zoo, which features alligators and black bears.