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Archive for February, 2012

17th Annual Natchitoches Jazz / R&B Festival to Have ‘Music Hall of Fame Flair’

Posted by on February 28th, 2012
Category Explore, Experience, and Enjoy Natchitoches Parish!, Natchitoches Convention and Visitor's Bureau
The 17th annual Natchitoches Jazz / R&B Festival will be held on March 30-31, 2012 on the downtown riverbank in Natchitoches and will have’hall of fame" flair to it. The festival will kick off Friday afternoon with "free Friday" meaning that there will be no admission. There will be several bands performing on Friday evening. Admission on Saturday will be $8.00 in advance and $10.00 at the gate for adults, $4.00 in advance and $5.00 at the gate for students and children 12 and under get in free. The year's festival will be headlined by rock & roll hall of fame group The Family Stone. The Family Stone originated in the San Francisco Bay area in 1967 and went on to become one of the most popular groups of the late 60's and early 70's. The group stroke gold with such million selling hits such as "Dance to the Music,’ (I want to take you) Higher", "It's a Family Affair", "Sing a Simple Song", and many more. Although Sly no longer performs with The Family Stone, the band's supercharged set combines elements of jazz, R&B, rock & roll, and funk to create and amazing concert experience. The year 2012 marks the 50th anniversary of the formation of The Rolling Stones. Another highlight to the musical lineup is ‘The Rolling Stones’ tribute band Satisfaction. If you can't catch The Stones show live, seeing Satisfaction is about as close as you can come. Led by Chris LeGrand, Satisfaction has the Stone's look, sound, and feel down to a "T" and will have everyone singing along. ‘The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame Bayou Bicentennial Caravan,’ which is traveling the state spotlighting Louisiana music, will be partnering with the Natchitoches Jazz / R&B Festival to present the Caravan for this area. The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame is holding a series of concerts around the state this year known as the ‘Bayou Bicentennial Music Caravan". The Caravan will celebrate the music of Louisiana by spotlighting Louisiana artists and/or songs that feature the state. Natchitoches group Johnny Earthquake and the Moondogs will be the backing the Caravan. ‘We're excited to be bringing the Bayou Bicentennial Music Caravan to the Natchitoches Jazz / R&B Festival," said Hall of Fame president and executive director Mike Shepherd. "We are happy to have a band of the Moondogs stature as our "house" band and plan to bring in artists who will spotlight several different genres of Louisiana music. It will be an amazing show." During the festival, the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame will be inducting two new members, who will be announced later. Also, much of the area's most popular groups will be performing, including Hardrick Rivers, LukeJazz, Becky Birdwell & Roadhouse, D.C. & the Zydeco Country Boyz, Doc Country & The Natchitoches All Stars, The LaCour Brothers and more. On Saturday, in addition to the music on multiple stages, there will be lots of great food and activities for kids. As festival co-chairman Layne Miller put it, ‘The star of the show has always been the downtown Natchitoches river bank, absolutely the best music venue on Earth." As usual, the festival will offer something for every musical taste. ‘We will have everything from zydeco, to country, to jazz, to R&B, to rock & roll, to blue grass, to funk, to blues, and everything in between.’ "I can't imagine that a music lover could come to this festival and not find something that he or she likes,’ Miller continued. "It's a family event and we've tried to keep it affordable so everyone can attend." For more information concerning the 2012 Natchitoches Jazz / R & B Festival, follow this link to or call the Natchitoches Area CVB at (800) 259-1714.

Natchitoches Mardi Gras: Throw me something Mister!

Posted by on February 13th, 2012
Category Explore, Experience, and Enjoy Natchitoches Parish!, In the Spotlight
UPDATE 2/18/2012: Due to the major rain in Natchitoches the Krewe of Dionysos has BEEN CANCELED & will not be rescheduled. Krewe of Waguns will roll on Sunday February 19, 2012 at 2pm. Are you ready for Mardi Gras? Natchitoches Krewe of Dionysus is ready for you! Formed in 1995 the Krewe of Dionysus has over 300 members and a dozen or more super float set to hand out thousands of beads, cups, and medallions while local marching bands keep the beat. Natchitoches Louisiana is a family oriented community that offers all the celebration and spectacle of a Mardi Gras parade without the dangerous crowds and packed surroundings of New Orleans. Natchitoches, also known for its world famous Christmas Festival, has been highlighted in several films and television movies and strives to provide a safe and welcoming environment to celebrate this unique holiday and celebration of life. The parade will take place on February 18th 2012 around 5:30pm. The Dionysus Krewe will gather on Hwy 1 South Drive for their floating party earlier in the day and families are encouraged to join them and gather and tail gate with friends. The route continues down Hwy 1 South Drive and then cuts across the Keyser bridge to continue onto Jefferson St. and head into the Historic Downtown of Natchitoches. The Parade will continue through the Historic district and offer families, tourists, locals, and out of towners a perfect vantage point to raise your arms and chant ‘Throw me something mister!’ The day will kick off with the unique Wag-uns Parade, which will highlight local pet lovers and their family friends as they stroll down the street and throw their own brand of beads and treasures to cheering observers. The Wag-uns Parade will begin at 1:00pm at the Bank of Montgomery on Washington Street and wind through the historic downtown areas. Children and pet owners are encouraged to attend and even participate with a minimal $5 registration fee. After the main Dionysus Krewe parade the party will continue on Front street and the river bank as the Jazz Cats, sponsored by Natchitoches Main Street, will provide music and fun suitable for all ages. If your are hungry or in need to shop, Front Street provides a wide variety of food and unique shops that will provide items only found in our heritage rich community. So come out and join us in our celebration of fun and excitement. Join in our all day event and celebrate our love for life as you experience original Louisiana music, food, and heritage at the Krewe of Dionysus parade February 18th 2012!

February 2012 Spotlight: Romance is in the Air

Posted by on February 1st, 2012
Category Explore, Experience, and Enjoy Natchitoches Parish!, In the Spotlight
With the beginning of February coming upon us, many people are scrambling to plan something special  for Valentine's Day. Stop sweating and plan your getaway today! The perfect location for that romantic rendezvous can be found right here in Natchitoches Louisiana.  The National Landmark Historic District is filled with Bed and Breakfast inns that each offers their own unique environment, amenities, and a staff willing to take that extra step to help make your stay relaxing and enjoyable. With a wide variety of locations and architectural styles, these charming Southern homes will remind you of the grace and elegance seen in films like Steel Magnolias or Gone With the Wind. The Bed and Breakfast inns of Natchitoches offer a higher standard of comfort and convenience that will allow you to show that someone special that you had them in mind when planning this trip. Looking for that right venue to entertain? Try Historic Front Street and the endless variety of restaurants and pubs, that offer southern creole, seafood, and down home cuisines at affordable prices. When your meal is done, take a romantic ride in a horse drawn carriage. While you sit back and travel through the Historic District, carriage drivers will take the time to explain the wonderful and rich history of Natchitoches and the homes made famous in such films as Steel Magnolias.  If you enjoy the performing arts, be sure to visit Northwestern State University's Theater West as they put on One Who Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest running for eight performances, from February 8th, 2012 to the February, 17th, 2012.  On February 18th, 2012 the Krewe of Dionysus will be holding the annual Mardi Gras parade through the historic district. The parade will be a family friendly event filled with beads, bands, and fun as Krewe members dance and sing their way down Hwy 1 South to the Historic District of Natchitoches.  If you have not found your perfect romantic rendezvous, then check into the live music that will be played in establishments along Front Street almost every weekend. No matter what, the nightlife in Natchitoches can offer you the perfect locations for stealing a kiss and wooing your love. During the day, venture out into Natchitoches Parish and stroll through the grounds of old plantation homes located throughout the parish. These large, lavish, homes offer informative tours that will explain not only how the homes came into existence, but how they have survived the many years to become hidden treasures of the South. If you feel like staying closer to the city, experience one of the art exhibits at the Norton R.W. Art Gallery on NSU's beautiful campus or the Natchitoches Art Guild located on Front Street. After seeing the beautiful artwork that Natchitoches artists have to offer, feel free to take a stroll down Front Street and browse the locally owned and operated shops that offer unique items for your home or office. At the end of the day, take a romantic stroll down along the beautiful Cane River Lake. By the end of the weekend, you'll find yourself planning your next vacation to beautiful Natchitoches Parish.

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