Live Music and Lively Festivals in Lafayette
By Heike Bachmann
It is said that the beauty of Louisiana is in its diversity – and nowhere did I feel that more than in Lafayette, where you can find all the amenities of a bustling university town, especially exciting festivals and a vibrant nightlife. And they’re all steeped in Cajun-Creole culture of course! From our first stop to our last, it was clear that people in Lafayette know how to have a good time!
Ringing Out the Night at the Blue Moon Saloon
For my first night in Lafayette, I was ready to get a taste of the city’s nightlife at the Blue Moon Saloon. Originally just a guesthouse which sporadically featured live music on its porch, the Blue Moon Saloon has become a top live music venue which rents out rooms! On the bill tonight were two opening acts and an all-female Zydeco Band. Zydeco, a mix of Cajun music and rhythm and blues, originated in Lafayette and now can be heard all over Louisiana. I settled into a rocking chair on the porch as the sun set and enjoyed the chatter and laughter of the locals gathering, beer in hand, around the porch of this traditional Victorian house. Once the music started, people casually walked into the barn-like structure where the band played. Soon everyone was inside, sitting on wooden benches or dancing late into the night to the highly addictive Zydeco rhythms. What a great introduction to local nightlife!
Music and Dancing at Downtown Alive!
Lucky for me, my visit to Lafayette took place during “Downtown Alive!”, which happens every Friday in spring and autumn. This is just one of many festivals which the city hosts throughout the year. Located right in the central Parc Sans Souci, the event was packed. The Mercy Brothers, a hillbilly gospel group which was playing that night, was just fantastic! This fun-filled festival was the perfect place to grab a drink, watch people dance, mingle with locals and afterwards find a patio table for a late bite to eat.
Lafayette Festivals and Music
There’s no doubt in my mind that the people of Lafayette like to celebrate. There are so many festivals throughout the year – why not plan a trip around one of them?
On the first weekend in May is the Breaux Bridge Crawfish Festival, celebrating the local favourite seafood and, of course, Cajun and Zydeco music. The steamy days at the end of August bring the Southwest Louisiana Zydeco Festival, billed as the world’s largest Zydeco music festival. In October, come for Festivals Acadiens et Créoles, which pays tribute to the Cajun and Creole cultures of Louisiana. And I can’t fail to mention Mardi Gras season, which is the pride of Louisiana culture, history and celebration!
After my visit to Lafayette, I’m convinced that this city loves to show its locals and visitors a good time. Let Lafayette welcome you with its endless festivals, rousing live music and fantastic nightlife!