Show 155, January 16, 2016: Dona Richard, St. Martin Parish Tourist Commission, Louisiana

Doma Richard of St Martin Parish with Andy HarrisCajun Country Louisiana is next on the travel menu. Joining us is Dona Degatur Richard from the St. Martin Parish Tourist Commission.

“With the distinctive designations of “Gateway to the Atchafalaya Basin,” “Home of Longfellow’s Evangeline” and “The Crawfish Capital of the World,” St, Martin Parish is a place like none other. See for yourself, and experience the difference!”

St. Martin Parish is located in south-central Louisiana; its parish seat is St. Martinville. It has a population of 52,160 (2010 US Census Bureau) and is 739.9 square miles in size.

Over one third of St. Martin Parish’s 52,000 inhabitants are Cajun, and the area certainly boasts large African-American, white Creole, and Creole of Color communities.

From the Bayou Teche to the Atchafalaya Basin, St. Martin Parish is a picturesque and bountiful region. Rich in agricultural, visitors are taken through sugar cane fields, low-lying swamp land, and rolling lands of beauty. Majestic live oaks, draped with moss, are scattered along roadways. Bald cypress trees and their unique stumps abound.

Dona provided us with a wonderful, full color recipe booklet, Louisiana: Destinations & Recipes. St. Martin Parish contributed their signature recipe for Crawfish Pilaf.

As the Crawfish Capital of the World they host the celebrated annual Breaux Bridge Crawfish Festival. This year it’s May 6th, 7th & 8th. Guests can feast on crawfish prepared every way imaginable.

The Crawfish Festival has also become one of the largest gatherings of world famous Cajun musicians. All weekend long you can hear the sound of authentic Cajun, Zydeco and Swamp Pop music rising from the festival.

Whether your musical taste is Cajun or Creole, you can witness over 30 bands perform over the three-day event if you think you have the stamina. It’s a perfect opportunity to see their musical tradition passed from generation to generation. Watch the Cajun dance contests, and if you’re brave, join in. There’s no better way to learn. There are even Cajun music workshops held in the heritage tent