Step back in time at Destrehan Plantation


November 11, 2011 at 10:31 am  | Mobile Reader | Pring this storyPrint 

Residents in St. Charles Parish will have plenty of options when it comes to spending time outdoors this weekend. Both Destrehan Plantation and Sacred Heart of Jesus School in Norco will hold festivals that repeatedly draw thousands of visitors. There wil
Thelezia Folse
Residents in St. Charles Parish will have plenty of options when it comes to spending time outdoors this weekend. Both Destrehan Plantation and Sacred Heart of Jesus School in Norco will hold festivals that repeatedly draw thousands of visitors. There wil
More than 150 artists and crafts vendors from throughout the country will peddle their pottery, jewelry, ceramics and fleur de lis items at the 40th annual Destrehan Plantation Fall Festival this weekend.

The festival is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday and draws between 10,000-12,000 people each year, according to Nancy Robert, the executive director of Destrehan Plantation.

A past winner of Southeast Tourism’s Top 20 Events and the Louisiana Fairs and Festivals Classics Award, the fest has become a favorite for those who love Louisiana food, crafts and music. The local delicacies available at the festival include cochon de lait po-boys, shrimp po-boys, pastalaya, alligator sausage, artichokes and hamburgers.

Four bands will also perform throughout the two-day event.

"This is our 40th anniversary so it is a milestone for us and we want to have one of our best festivals," Robert said. "We just have a variety of so many different things. A lot of people come for our arts and crafts because we have a real great selection of household and decorative items. But in addition we have a lot of things that appeal to the whole family, such as our time period demonstrations, and the great food which is made by some of the best around."

For just $7 per person and no charge for children 12 and under, parishioners can take a step back in time by touring the plantation and watching time period demonstrations, including open hearth cooking, bousillege construction and indigo dyeing. Special exhibits on the 1811 Slave Revolt, an original document signed by Thomas Jefferson and other Louisiana Purchase documents can be viewed throughout the weekend.

Visitors can also jump back into the present with face painting, pony rides and Euro-bungy jumping.

This year’s entertainment line-up includes Kayla Woodson and LA Lightning from 10 a.m. until noon and Summer Breeze Band from 12:30-4 p.m. on Saturday. On Sunday, Reed Alleman will perform from 10 a.m. until noon and Local Option 2 will play from 12:30-4 p.m

Woodson, 16, has been singing in front of crowds since the age of four. At eight, she sang with The Topcats and also sang the national anthem at a New Orleans Hornets game. Woodson and her band Louisiana Lightning have already played Jazz Fest, where she showed her unique talents to sing country, pop and gospel.

Local Option 2 plays rock, dance, R&B and funk music, while Reed Alleman is a singer, songwriter and guitarist who has been playing his own brand of folk rock music for more than 20 years.

The festival will also be an opportunity for crafty parishioners to browse more than 150 arts and crafts booths. The booths will include a variety of wares, including pottery, jewelry, dolls, stained glass, ceramics, fleur de lis items and more.

In addition to the main food fare, snacks such as Italian cookies, kettle corn, beignets, snoballs, caramel apples and roasted peanuts will be offered.

During the festival, the plantation will offer guided tours for an additional fee.

The festival is the main fund raising event for the River Road Historical Society for Destrehan Plantation site development and expansion.

For a full music schedule, see the ad on page 2A.




View other articles written By Jonathan Menard

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