The African-American Museum in St. Martinville takes advantage of okra's bounty at its annual Okra Cook-Off Food Festival, scheduled this year for Saturday, July 29. (The 4-year-old festival was originally held in November, forcing cooks to use frozen okra.) "We changed our dates for okra season," says museum Curator/Director Danielle Fontenette. Local cooks will come out to New Market Street ready to prepare fresh okra from their own gardens or local farmers markets. "So many different cooks cook okra so many different ways," says Fontenette. "Everyone comes out and cooks okra the way they do it: smothered, gumbo ... one year we found out there was a lady who fries okra in a pie."
Cook-off participants arrive at 6 a.m. to begin heating up their pots, so their dishes will be ready for 9 a.m. judging. Music by Sha-Me-noo and the Zydeco Drifters starts at 1 p.m., and the African-American Museum will be open for okra presentations and history. Children's face painting even includes the option of a bright green okra stalk.
The festival and cook-off evolved out of the museum's history with the West African country of Senegal and its yearly mission trips to Africa. "One of the things in the beginning, when we were looking at the connection, we were amazed to find the West Africans brought the okra with them on the slave ships," says Fontenette. "It's been a part of our culture forever. We're celebrating our heritage."
For more info on the Okra Cook-Off Food Festival, call Danielle Fontenette at 394-2250.
High-profile criminal defense attorney Daniel Stanford awaits his fate in the Curious Goods conspiracy trial.
The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is set to put the kibosh on the legal ownership of monkeys trained to help the disabled, and the agency wants to know what you think.
A federal judge on Thursday asked lawyers battling over Louisiana's new, restrictive abortion law for an agreement that apparently could let clinics stay open — at least for a while — after the law takes effect Sept. 1.
Three bedroom Port Barre cottage or three bedroom historic district Opelousas home
No laboring for shoppers this holiday
It will be next month before Gov. Bobby Jindal will likely get a chance to change the membership of a South Louisiana flood board that is suing dozens of oil, gas and pipeline companies.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
An abortion rights organization wants a federal judge to block enforcement of Louisiana's new abortion law while its lawsuit to overturn the law makes its way through court.
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Thursday's Blogs from the Bog!
Dogs get back-to-school blues; mother pleads for release of journalist; ice bucket challenge and more national and international news for Thursday, August 28, 2014.
The Acadiana Center for the Arts and the Lafayette Economic Development Authority have announced a new artist stipend program, ArtSpark, designed to offer financial aid to local artists.
A group supporting taxpayer-funded private school tuition vouchers is appealing a federal judge's order that Louisiana must provide regular reports to federal officials on the state's voucher program.
The Discovery Channel has canceled reality TV star Will Hayden's popular "Sons of Guns" show after his arrest on an aggravated rape charge.
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Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Authorities are investigating a report that a student there warned the principal of impending violence similar to that depicted in the movie "The Purge."
Saints cornerback Champ Bailey has played for more than a handful of playoff teams during a career that has seen him selected to 12 Pro Bowls.
Louisiana's Republican governor has filed a lawsuit against the Obama administration, accusing it of illegally using federal grant money and regulations to force states to adopt the Common Core education standards.
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Newly established honor recognizes outstanding local attorneys; Neuner and McGoffin win President's Award; and Blanchard named Outstanding Young Lawyer.
Daily paper constructing new digs near production plant on Rieger Road at Siegen Lane, near I-10.
Investigation finds Arnaud’s Furniture, Carroll Building Specialties and Crazy Charlie’s Shoes running misleading going-out-of-business sales.
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New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees is a proud papa of new baby girl.
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"This is yet another example of the failed leadership and lack of focus that Hunter Beasley has exhibited. He’s shown zero regard for kids, teachers or even passing a budget for the school year that’s already started."