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Chef Brent Daigle of Grady V’s Named One of Seventeen Participating Chefs at 2023 Louisiana Goes Lone Star Culinary Event

Chef Brent Daigle of Grady V’s Named One of Seventeen Participating Chefs at 2023 Louisiana Goes Lone Star Culinary Event

Raceland, Louisiana (October 16, 2023) – Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism, the destination marketing organization for Lafourche Parish, announced Monday that Chef Brent Daigle of Grady V’s in Thibodaux has been selected to represent Lafourche Parish at the “Louisiana Goes Lone Star” culinary event in Dallas, Texas. Chef Brent Daigle, a graduate of the Chef John Folse Culinary Institute at Nicholls State University, will join 16 other top chefs from around Louisiana to feature the state’s unique flavors.

This annual out-of-state culinary event will be presented by the Louisiana Travel Association, the Louisiana Office of Tourism and the Louisiana Seafood Promotion & Marketing Board, with Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou a first-time participant. Taking place in Dallas this year, “Louisiana Goes Lone Star” is a two-day culinary showcase consisting of a Media/Influencer Preview Night on Tuesday, October 24 and a Restaurant Takeover Night on Wednesday, October 25.

For Restaurant Takeover Night, Chef Brent Daigle will be paired with Chef Arturo Cruz of Dodie’s Reef, a popular Cajun restaurant located in the Lower Greenville neighborhood of Dallas. The two chefs will combine efforts on a Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou-themed menu featuring Grady V’s favorites like the blue crab beignets, bayou red fish, and a banana’s foster tres leches cake. Visitors, locals and anyone interested in attending this special one-night-only dinner, should call Dodie’s Reef at 214-823-7333 and make their reservation for the night of Wednesday, October 25.

Boasting an exciting food and beverage scene, Dallas is an important regional market to Louisiana and this event offers a savory opportunity to showcase the diverse and delicious delights of the State. The events over the course of the showcase will allow the culinary scene of Lafourche Parish to be told in a targeted market and inspire both travelers and the media to get a taste for what awaits across the Texas-Louisiana border.

“Food is a way of life in Louisiana. We plan our festivals and events around the culinary seasons and we are excited to bring a taste to Dallas next month,” says Louisiana Travel Association president and CEO, Chris Landry. “As a neighboring state, destinations around Louisiana are a short drive or direct flight from Dallas. We are excited to have 17 Louisiana chefs in restaurants around the city to whet locals’ appetites and inspire them to make Louisiana their next travel destination.” 

Other participating chefs include:

Angel Lombrage, The Bullfish Bistro, Baton Rouge
Ross Dover, Palmettos on the Bayou, The Northshore
Owen Hohl, Hot Tails Restaurants, Louisiana
Holly Goetting, Charley G’s, Lafayette
Anthony Felan, Fat Calf Brasserie, Shreveport-Bossier
Frederic Terluin, Rouj Creole, Baton Rouge
Richard & Lori Hurst, Poor Boy’s Riverside Inn, Lafayette
Keith & Nealy Frentz, LOLA, The Northshore
Damien “Chapeaux” Chapman, Orlandeaux’s Café, Shreveport-Bossier
Ana Castro, Lengua Madre, New Orleans
Lyle Broussard, L’Auberge Casino Resort, Lake Charles
Cory Bahr, Parish Restaurant, Monroe-West Monroe
Jeremy Langlois, Latil’s Landing at Houmas House, Ascension Parish
Jason Derouen, Bayou Country Crawfish Trail, Houma
Desi Bourgeois, Grown and Grazed, Ruston
Grayling Thibodeaux, St. John Restaurant, St. Martin Parish

For more information on the event, visit: https://www.louisianagoeslonestar.com/

Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism Wins Shining Example Award from Southeast Tourism Society

Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism Wins Shining Example Award from Southeast Tourism Society

Raceland, Louisiana (September 29, 2023) – Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou, the destination marketing organization for Lafourche Parish, announced Friday they were a recipient of a Shining Example Award for Best Marketing from the Southeast Tourism Society (STS). Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou was selected among nominations from several destinations across the Southeast, and were on hand to receive the award at the STS Connections Conference in Jackson, MS on Wednesday night.

The award recognizes the “You Gotta Try This!” campaign which was launched by Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou in April 2022. The campaign aimed to promote the unique and flavorful culinary scene in Lafourche Parish, and was supported through targeted digital and print media, social media, and public relations outreach.

“We are very thankful to be recognized on a regional level for our marketing efforts over the last year for the “You Gotta Try This” campaign” said President/CEO Cody A. Gray. “We are always encouraging people to wander off the eatin’ path while visiting Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou, and are appreciative of all of our tourism partners who helped us achieve this award.”

The tourism office worked with several restaurants and tourism partners up and down the bayou to collect new photo and video assets, and this year relaunched their Cajun Bayou Food Trail with the addition of three new Food Trail restaurants and a new Food Trail T-shirt.

For more information about Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou, visit their website at lacajunbayou.com. For more information about the Southeast Tourism Society, visit their website at southeasttourism.org.

Louisiana's Cajun Bayou Tourism Welcomes New Office/Finance Manager

Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism Welcomes New Office/Finance Manager

Raceland, Louisiana (September 26, 2023) – Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism, the destination marketing organization for Lafourche Parish, welcomed its new Office/Finance Manager this month in the hiring of Brandi Hebert.

Hebert fills a position that had been vacated since late August and will play a crucial part of the Cajun Bayou Tourism team moving forward. Tasked with managing all office and finance matters, Brandi will also take on the handling of the Lafourche Pavilion and will work with the local organizations who hold their events there.

“We are very excited to have Brandi join our close-knit family here at Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism” says President/CEO Cody A. Gray. “Her experience made her a stand-out candidate for the position and I am confident she will grow into a leader for our organization.”

Brandi is a local of Lafourche Parish and is a proud resident of Bayou Blue. She brings 12 years of finance and office management experience making her a perfect fit for the position. Outside of her professional ambitions, Brandi is also a loving mother and spends her free time camping, cooking up Cajun food, and watching her favorite football team.

“I am looking forward to working with our local businesses and learning more about the hidden gems within Lafourche Parish” says Hebert. “I am excited for the new relationships with my team and welcome all the exciting experiences to come.”

Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Announces Return of Y’Allstars Southern Skate Showdown in 2024

Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Announces Return of Y’Allstars Southern Skate Showdown in 2024

Raceland, Louisiana (August, 22, 2023) – Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou, the destination management organization for Lafourche Parish, announced they have once again been selected as the host of the Y’Allstars Southern Skate Showdown, a premier roller derby tournament composed of teams from across the United States. Following its inaugural success in 2023, the competition will make its return to Warren J. Harang Auditorium in Thibodaux the weekend of February 22-25, 2024.

The event will be hosted as part of a joint effort from Team Louisiana Roller Derby, the state’s collective all-star roller derby team, and Red Stick Roller Derby Juniors, the Baton Rouge-based youth roller derby team. In early 2023, the City of Thibodaux welcomed nearly 500 participating athletes, coaches, and officials, making it one of the largest events to take place in Lafourche Parish.

The economic impact for the City of Thibodaux from the 2023 tournament resulted in 400 room nights at local hotels and Airbnb’s. It is also estimated over 900 meals were consumed at local restaurants, and additional visitor spending was made at local attractions and shops in the community.

“After a successful first year, we are excited to see the return of the Y’Allstars Southern Skate Showdown to Thibodaux” said President & CEO of Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou, Cody A. Gray. “Events like these bring in visitors from across the country and provide significant economic activity in our parish. We sincerely appreciate the tournament organizers for choosing Lafourche Parish to host their exciting event for the second year in a row.”

Details about the 2024 tournament including the announcement of the teams competing, the competition format, ticket information and more will be coming soon! For further information about the Y’Allstars Southern Skate Showdown, visit their website linked below. For vendor/sponsorship opportunities, contact Kaitlyn Estes, Tournament Organizer at [email protected].


Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism Celebrates Acadian Heritage Day Following Cultural Immersion Trip to Nova Scotia

Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism Celebrates Acadian Heritage Day Following Cultural Immersion Trip to Nova Scotia

Raceland, Louisiana (August 15, 2023) – In July 2022, tourism officials representing Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou, the Municipality of Clare in Nova Scotia, Yarmouth & Acadian Shores in Nova Scotia, and the Congrès Mondial Acadien 2024 announced a historic partnership with the intent to bring two regions with close ties to the Acadian culture closer together, in a campaign titled “From Acadian to Cajun: Two Countries, One Culture.” In a continued effort to strengthen the partnership and to recognize and embrace Lafourche Parish’s deep Acadian roots, members of the staff of Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism returned from a cultural immersion and media trip to Nova Scotia the first week of August 2023. They were accompanied by a travel journalist who had recently visited Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou.

The Acadian culture, deeply rooted in both Louisiana and Nova Scotia, is a celebration of resilience, language, music, cuisine and traditions that have been passed down for generations. Louisiana's Cajun Bayou Tourism believes that cultural tourism plays a vital role in preserving the legacy of the Acadian and Cajun people. Engaging visitors in the traditions, language and customs of the culture creates a deeper appreciation and understanding, encouraging future generations to continue passing down these treasured traditions.The tourism office’s goal with this trip was to experience the Acadian lifestyle so its staff can better understand the origins of the Cajun culture and the connections between the two countries, as well as demonstrate the ongoing partnership to an influential travel journalist.

Upon arrival in Nova Scotia, Cody Gray and Ian Wallis of Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism met with the Executive Director of the Congrès Mondial Acadien 2024, Vaughne Madden, and members of the Municipality of Clare. At this meeting, the officials exchanged gifts, acknowledging and celebrating their partnership and officially welcoming the Louisianans to Canada.
Throughout their time in the area, Gray and Wallis visited many important Acadian historic sites, including the Grand Pre National Historic Site (the site of the Acadian Deportation), Le Village Historique Acadien de la Nouvelle-Ecosse (the Acadian Village) Le Musee des Acadiens des Pubnico (the Acadian Museum & Archives), and the University of St. Anne. They toured Tusket Island, accompanied by Colton LeBlanc, the Minister of Acadian Affairs, and Sally Kenney, the Family Reunions Coordinator for CMA 2024. To experience Louisiana from the Canadian point of view, the pair was invited by Daniel LeBlanc, the Director of the Festival Acadien de Clare, to attend a “Louisiana Night”-themed event, where they were recognized and introduced to the community.

After the team returned to Louisiana on August 8, Lafourche Parish President Archie Chaisson III signed a proclamation recognizing August 15 as Acadian Heritage Day in Lafourche Parish. This proclamation acknowledges the work being done to promote the Acadian and Cajun culture in the parish.
To learn more about the Acadian to Cajun partnership and all of the ways visitors can experience Cajun culture on a visit to Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou, please visit https://www.lacajunbayou.com/from-acadian-to-cajun

Newly Refreshed Cajun Bayou Food Trail Launches with Three New Restaurants

Newly Refreshed Cajun Bayou Food Trail Launches with Three New Restaurants

Raceland, Louisiana (May 15, 2023) – It’s no secret that some of the best food in the South can be found in Louisiana. Gumbo, jambalaya, etouffee, boudin … if it’ hard to spell and tasty to eat, odds are no one makes it better than someone’s grandma down in Cajun Country. Here in Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou, chefs have access to their own personal pantry with the bayou being steps away. Fresh ingredients, recipes passed down through generations and the not-so-secret ingredient of “a whole lotta love” come together to create dishes that put this region on the map.

And speaking of maps, in 2018, Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou dished out their very own Cajun Bayou Food Trail. For the past five years, the trail has celebrated the authentic food found within the area’s Cajun roots, offering a way for visitors to truly experience Cajun cuisine like never before.

Today, Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism is excited to unveil a refreshed trail with new additions and enhancements. Since no one can ever have too many boudin balls, three stops are being added to the preexisting – and authentically delicious – trail, bringing the total participating restaurants to 18. These additions provide more dining options for trail-goers in North, Central and South Lafourche -- Grady V’s in Thibodaux (Blue Crab Beignets, anyone?), Bayou Boucherie Meat Market in Mathews, and Mommie Jo’s Restaurant in Cut Off.

Visitors need only a trail map, passport and quite the appetite to begin their journey, though stretchy pants are also recommended! After getting five stamps on your Food Trail passport, which can be found both online and at the Visitor’s Center, guests are eligible for a free Food Trail t-shirt, a comfy badge of honor that, after sampling all the parish has to offer, should be ordered in a size up.

In addition to updated promotional and marketing items like a refreshed landing page and new Food Trail stamps for restaurants, the beloved trail t-shirt is also getting a makeover … meaning those who have traveled the trail and earned the t-shirt in the past have no excuse not to head to Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou for round two!

Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Honors Tourism Partners at 2023 Bayou Ambassador Awards Luncheon

Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Honors Tourism Partners at 2023 Bayou Ambassador Awards Luncheon

Raceland, Louisiana (May 11, 2023)Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism, the destination management organization for Lafourche Parish, honored five tourism partners with their Bayou Ambassador Awards in recognition of their dedicated service to the tourism industry in Lafourche Parish.

The Jean Lafitte Wetlands Acadian Cultural Center in Thibodaux was selected as Attraction of the Year, Grady V’s Restaurant in Thibodaux was selected as Restaurant of the Year, the 2022 French Food Festival in Cut Off was selected as Event of the Year, and Ms. Tiffany Dardar, Sales Manager at the Candlewood Suites in Cut Off was selected as the Hospitality Employee of the Year. The recipients were honored for their exceptional service and commitment to making Lafourche Parish a year-round tourism destination in 2022.

A special award, The Spirit of the Bayou Award, was given to the Cajun Music Preservation Society. This award was created to honor a tourism partner who embraces the true authentic brand of Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou as someone who whole-heartedly encompasses the spirit of the bayou. Members of the Cajun Music Preservation Society including Quenton Fontenot, Misty McElroy, Gary LaFleur, and Tysman Charpentier accepted the award.

Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism (LCBT) Board Chair, Marguerite Knight-Erwin, delivered a special welcome to guests that included the importance of the visitor economy in Lafourche Parish. Additionally, the President & CEO of LCBT, Cody A. Gray, provided an update on projects he and his organization are working on, including a parish-wide signage project, a new visitor’s center, and the announcement of a revamped Cajun Bayou Food Trail.

“Our Bayou Ambassador Awards and luncheon as a whole is our way of showing thanks and giving back to our tourism partners who show an unwavering support to our overall goal in making Lafourche Parish a premier tourism destination” said Cody A. Gray, President & CEO of Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou. “As we continue to recover from Hurricane Ida and the effects of Covid-19, we appreciate their support and we look forward to working with and supporting them in the future. Congratulations to all of our award winners on their much-deserved recognition.”

The 2023 Bayou Ambassador Awards Luncheon coincides with National Travel & Tourism Week, an annual celebration of the United States tourism industry.

Louisiana's Cajun Bayou Tourism Awards $60,000 in Tourism Investment Funds to Support Three New Tourism Projects in Lafourche Parish

Louisiana's Cajun Bayou Tourism Awards $60,000 in Tourism Investment Funds to Support Three New Tourism Projects in Lafourche Parish

Raceland, Louisiana (March 17, 2023) – Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism, the tourist commission for Lafourche Parish, announced on Friday the award of $60,000 in grant funds to support three new tourism projects in Lafourche Parish through their 2023 Tourism Investment Program (TIP).

Applications for this year’s TIP funding were accepted February 1 - March 1, 2023 with the goal of supporting the creation of new tourism projects and events aimed at driving increased visitation to the parish. The three projects were selected among a competitive field of applicants, and will help foster the development and growth of the visitor economy and enrichment of life in Lafourche Parish.

Beneficiaries of the 2023 Tourism Investment Program funding include:

Lafourche Arc, for the creation of a new event called the: “BBQ, Bourbon, and Blues Festival

- The festival will be the first in Lafourche Parish to feature barbeque, bourbon and Blues and aims to make the event annual by attracting visitation and participation from outside of Lafourche Parish.

Nicholls State University Foundation, for the creation of a new men’s basketball multi-team event (MTE) called the “LA Cajun Bayou Tournament”

- The tournament is anticipated to draw teams, athletes, families, and visitors from outside of Louisiana and position itself as an annual sports tourism event.

Friends of E.D. White Historic Site, for the development of the E.D. White Historic Site bayou-side and creation of an immersive Cajun Day Experience Tour

- The bayou-side development will create an added recreational outlet to Bayou Lafourche, while the new engaging tour will highlight our authentic Cajun culture through partnerships with the Jean Lafitte Wetlands Acadian Cultural Center, Laurel Valley Village, and area restaurants. In addition, the tour will provide hands on activities for visitors to connect with our destination and work with area hotels to promote it.

“A common thread among the TIP submissions was the goal to make Lafourche Parish an incredible place to live and an essential one to visit. We feel that these projects embody Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou brand of authentic Cajun culture, and the spirit of our local people who make this area so unique,” said, Marguerite Knight-Erwin, Chair of the Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism Board of Directors.

“Our organization was thrilled to welcome back the return of our Tourism Investment Program and the ability to financially assist in the development of new tourism assets for Lafourche Parish” said Cody A. Gray, President & CEO of Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism. “Our goal for this year’s program was to help organizations create new opportunities to increase our ability to attract more visitation, while also improving the quality of life for our residents.”

TIP was first implemented in 2016 and has awarded $483,000 in grants since its inception. The funds distributed to this year’s recipients were gained by a portion of the room tax revenues generated from overnight guests to the parish. The Tourism Investment Program allows for the reinvestment of that money back into the destination.

For more information on how the parish positions itself as a year-round tourism destination and our strategic plan for the future, click on our strategic plan HERE.

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