Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Gift the gift of the outdoors this holiday season

Louisiana State Arboretum
     Need something to do with the kids over the holiday vacation, a gift of experience that may last a lifetime? Try getting them outside in the wonderful state parks surrounding Lafayette.
    On Saturday, Dec. 22, 2012, Chicot State Park in Ville Platte will offer a Dutch Oven Gathering from 9 a.m. to noon. Participants will join the monthly Dutch oven cooking demonstrations, to view how cooking can be done in the wild. At the nearby Louisiana State Arboretum on Dec. 22 visitors will take a hike — literally — to identify trees during the hardest time of the year, winter, beginning at 2 p.m. For more information on either event, call (888) 677-6100 or (337) 363-6289 locally.
    Also on Saturday, Dec. 22, Lake Fausse Pointe State Park near St. Martinville will offer a Sunset Hike from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. to the slough lookout to catch views of deer, owls and other wildlife while the sun sets. There will also be a morning canoe tour from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 29, at Lake Fausse Pointe State Park where visitors will enjoy the tranquility of calm and quiet waters while learning about the park’s history and flora and fauna along the way. Canoeing experience is recommended and space is limited, so please call for reservations. For more information call (888) 677-7200 or (337) 229-4764 locally.

    For something totally different, visit the Louisiana State Arboretum and learn about Flying Squirrels with the site naturalist from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 29. Visitors will enjoy a hike to see the squirrel’s preferred habitat in the old growth forest at the Arboretum.
    For more information about Louisiana State Parks, visit

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

New Year’s Celebrations in Lafayette

Geno Delafose
    In South Louisiana, we know how to party so you can imagine that the New Year is brought in with a bang. Here are a few celebrations occurring this year in Lafayette and the surrounding areas.
    Zydeco extraordinaire Geno Delafose & French Rockin’ Boogie tears up the Vermilionville Performance Center on New Year’s Eve (Monday, Dec. 31, 2012) beginning at 9:30 p.m. and continuing to 12:30 a.m. at Vermilionville in Lafayette. Doors open at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $35 and available in Vermilionville’s Gift Shop by calling (337) 233-4077.
    Grammy Award winner David Eagan performs for the New Year’s Eve crowd at Charley G’s restaurant, where a set menu and four different rounds of dinner seating will be offered. Booths in the bar are part of the reserved seating but the bar top is available on a first come, first served basis. For more information, visit
    The Performing Arts Society of Acadiana (PASA) is hosting a New Year's Eve event from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. Monday, Dec. 31, at 721 E. Kaliste Saloom Road. There will be live music by Krossfyre, food provided by local restaurants, complimentary wine, beer and frozen cosmos and a champagne toast at midnight. Cost is $100 per person. For information, call (337) 237-2787.
    Get your dancing shoes on and head over to McGee’s Landing in Henderson, about 20 minutes outside of Lafayette, for its New Year’s Eve Bash with Cajun music by Ryan Brunet, Christine Balfa and Al Berard. The music — and dancing — starts at 7 p.m. The cover charge is $10 and there will be lots of champagne.
    La Poussiere, a traditional Cajun dancehall in Breaux Bridge, presents its annual New Year's Eve Bash with Jackie Caillier, Ivy Dugas and the Cajun Cousins with special guest musicians. Tickets are $15 in advance (by Saturday, Dec. 29) and will be $20 at the door.
    New Year’s doesn’t have to mean leaving the kids at home. The Children’s Museum of Acadiana offers a New Year’s Noon Countdown & Carnival from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 31 at the museum in downtown Lafayette. The cost is $6 per person and includes exhibits, confetti, cannons and prize drops. For more information, call (337) 232-8500 or visit
David Eagn