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Looking for top-notch, inexpensive family entertainment, great food, a beautiful outdoor experience and some of the best music in the world? Two words: Louisiana festivals.
More than 400 Louisiana festivals occur each year – which makes it easy to see why Louisiana is often called the Festival Capital of America. We celebrate just about every crop harvested, every indigenous dish, every type of music that's played here – ranging from Cajun and zydeco to Delta blues, New Orleans jazz, Louisiana's own swamp pop, country, salsa and more. Excellent Louisiana food is a given at any festival. And as always, Louisiana festivals offer abundant opportunities for meeting new friends.
Themed festivals range from a Strawberry Festival in Ponchatoula and Tomato Festival in Chalmette to the great Festival International in Lafayette; from the big Contraband Days Pirate Festival in Lake Charles to the Holiday Festival of Lights in Natchitoches. From the Red River Revel in Shreveport to the Catfish Festival in Washington. Of course, you'll want to visit the annual New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, or the big family-fun French Quarter Festival.
And for the biggest of them all? That's right, Louisiana is home to Mardi Gras! But that's another story – and a very large one across the state!
Bayou Teche, a waterway in south central Louisiana, meanders through St. Martinville, where birds wade among cattails, streets are shaded by century-old mossy oaks and people enjoy fishing, picnics in the parks and visits to historic museums.
The St. Martinville people are descendants of Beausoleil Broussard, an Acadian hero from the 1700s, and Bienvenu and the Duchamp families of French royalty, who fled revolution. Descendants from Senegal also share life in St. Martinville, and many residents still speak French.
These diverse ethnic groups host fun-loving Louisiana festivals: Boucherie, Mardi Gras, Pepper Festival, St. Lucy Festival of Lights, Okra and Acadian Memorial Festival/ Promenade on the Square and more. Seems like an all-play, no-work kind of place, but civic-minded citizens work all year to assure something enjoyable is happening around town. Visit St. Martinville, an All-American City Finalist along the lovely Bayou Teche. Many of its the buildings in its historic district are on the National Historic Register.