It doesn’t take much to get Barry Ancelet keyed up. Just start denigrating Acadian history and culture and you’ll get a blast from the keeper of the Cajun flame. That smoldering temper combined with a lifetime of scholarship, teaching, organizing, writing and living the life rather than preserving Cajun culture as a museum piece have earned him the recognition of the Lafayette City-Parish Council.

Tomorrow night, Mayor Joey Durel will present Ancelet  with a key to the city, a proclamation and an award as a distinguished citizen from the City-Parish Council for his contributions as an ambassador for our community throughout the U.S. and French-speaking world. 

Councilman Don Bertrand is the locksmith behind they key ceremony. “I wanted to start recognizing the people who have been ambassadors for our culture and heritage, and who helped spread the word around the world,” he says. “Barry Ancelet is one of those people who has spent his life working for the good of the community. He has not only distinguished himself, but he has distinguished and lifted the culture and people of Lafayette, Lafayette Parish and the Acadiana region. ”

The key is five inches long. What does it open? “No hidden chamber, no buried skeletons,” says Bertrand. “The real secret is there are no secrets around here.”

For those who would like to attend, the key ceremony is one of the first items on the agenda of the City-Parish Council meeting, which begins at 5:30 p.m., at the Ted Ardoin Auditorium in City Hall.

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