Dancing, Dining & A Good Time: St. Martin Parish
The slogan of St. Martin Parish is simply, yet aptly: "Where Cajun Begins". With the distinctive designations of being not only the gateway to the Atchafalaya Basin, but also home of the famed Longfellow Evangeline Oak, and also the Crawfish Capital of the World--among other things--St. Martin Parish lives up to its moniker in spades. Keep in mind that 50% of St. Martin Parish's total area is water, so it should come as no surprise that the Parish prides itself on the tributaries that run off of the largest wetland and swamp in the United States. But it's more than just Cajun crustaceans and poetic flora that make St. Martin Parish a hotspot for all things Cajun.
Visitors should do like the locals-burst out of your shell and onto the dance floor. A great place to do that is at the annual Al Bernard Music Festival taking place at the famed NuNu Arts & Culture Collective on December 3rd. Taking place in the beautiful and historic town of Arnaudville, the Al Bernard Memorial Fund has granted approximately $40,000 to music organizations throughout Acadiana. It also supports Acadiana's unique musical culture by providing instruments, teachers, and music scholarships to students of all ages. With locally and internationally known artist performing in an intimate setting, it's a great chance to "pass a good time".
As it toe-tapping music isn't enough to get you to explore what the parish has to offer, you could always spend time in one of Louisiana's oldest cities--St. Martinville--as they celebrate their bicentennial. The years may have changed, but the rich Cajun culture is alive and well and will be on display for all to see. Don't be surprised if you even see Acadian settlers walking the streets of St. Martinville in period accurate dress.
The people of St. Martin parish like to say that they live in a place where people play just as hard as they work, and where history is alive and well. With just one trip to one of its many hamlets and you'll agree; it's a place like no other. Welcome to a place where no one will let you dance alone.
Welcome to a place where no one will let you go hungry. Welcome to a place where you will never be a stranger. Welcome to St. Martin Parish.