You're invited to Louisiana's birthday party this weekend | Community Spirit
It's a big birthday party for Louisiana and you're invited. The state is celebrating its 200th birthday on Monday, April 30 and festivities start this weekend. Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne and Louisiana Bicentennial Commission Chairman retired Lt. General Russel Honoré recently announced details including a festival featuring Louisiana cuisine and a special joint session of the Legislature with special celebrity guests like Political Strategist James Carville.
The Bicentennial Family Homecoming Celebration, the Commission’s hallmark event, is scheduled for Saturday, April 28 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., in downtown Baton Rouge. The Main Stage will feature entertainment all day and pavilions representing different regions of the state will be set up in Capitol Park, highlighting their food, music and artisans.
The free event will feature all of the best Louisiana has to offer from every region of the state—Sportsman’s Paradise, the Crossroads, Plantation Country , Cajun Country and Greater New Orleans. Each region will be represented in a different tented area in Capitol Park. Throughout the day, music from each region will be featured on the Main Stage and food will be featured in the cooking demonstration area. A kids tent will included activities for children. The Louisiana National Guard’s 159th Fighter Wing will complete a national anthem flyover.
“The Saturday prior to our April 30 Bicentennial will be a special day for anyone who has ever called Louisiana home,” Lt. Governor Dardenne said. “This is Louisiana’s birthday party and we are excited to invite folks out to this festival celebrating 200 years of celebrating in Louisiana.”
On Monday, Dardenne will be master of ceremonies at a joint session of the Louisiana Legislature. The joint session will be held in the House Chamber of the State Capitol at 1:30 p.m. Special celebrity guests include musicians Zachary Richard, Deacon John, Jay Chevalier and Irma Thomas; political strategist James Carville; journalist Cokie Roberts; actress Faith Ford; chef Paul Prudhomme and filmmakers William Joyce and Brandon Oldenburg. Former Governors Edwin Edwards and Kathleen Blanco and Louisiana State Supreme Court Chief Justice Kitty Kimball will be in attendance. Statewide elected officials and former lieutenant governors have been invited to attend. Additionally, there will be at least one surprise guest.
“I am thrilled that so many Louisiana luminaries are coming to Baton Rouge to recognize our Bicentennial,” Lt. Governor Dardenne said. “It’s an exciting time for a state that is unlike any other and our 200-year story of passion, resilience and joie de vivre is worth celebrating.”
Monique Gagnon-Tremblay, Québec’s minister of international relations and Francophone affairs, will present Louisiana with a birthday gift from Québec. The Louisiana National Guard will present the colors and the Captain Shreve High School a capella choir will lead The Star Spangled Banner. Clergy from multiple denominations including Bishop Robert Muench, Rabbi Edward Paul Cohn, Bishop Charles Jenkins, Pastor Anthony Magnum and the Reverend Samual Tolbert will offer prayers for Louisiana.
The executive vice president of the United States Postal Service will dedicate Louisiana’s Bicentennial stamp which goes on sale Monday. The stamp features a C.C. Lockwood photograph and will be available for purchase at the State Capitol Post Office. Following the joint session a giant 200th birthday cake will be cut in the State Capitol’s Memorial Hall.
For more information, go to www.LouisianaBicentennial2012.com
Bicentennial events will take place through 2012. Visit www.LouisianaBicentennial2012.com for more information on programs and events.
Bicentennial Family Homecoming
April 28, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
11 a.m. Sportsman’s Paradise presents Monty Russell Main Stage
11 a.m. Crossroads cooks Tamales Cooking Demonstration Area
12 p.m. New Orleans presents Christian Serpas Main Stage
12 p.m. Plantation Country cooks Jambalaya Cooking Demonstration Area
1 p.m. Cajun Country presents Chubby Carrier and
The Bayou Swamp Band Main Stage
1 p.m. Sportsman’s Paradise cooks Pork Rinds, Tuna
Tartare and Pickled Peach Sauce Cooking Demonstration Area
2 p.m. Crossroads presents Sylvia Johns Ritchie. Main Stage
2 p.m. New Orleans cooks deep fried king cake Cooking Demonstration Area
3 p.m. Plantation Country Presents The Fabulous
Bagasse Boyz Main Stage
3 p.m. Cajun Country cooks Crawfish Étoutfée Cooking Demonstration Area
3: 20 p.m. Plantation Country present Judy Davis
Note: The Louisiana National Guard’s 159th Fighter Wing jet flyover will happen in conjunction with the national anthem.