Charlestown Cultural District
The Louisiana Cultural Districts Program was created by Act 298 of the 2007 Regular Session of the legislature. The primary goal of this initiative is to spark community revitalization based on cultural activity through tax incentives.

This site is intended to provide pertinent information to local governing authorities, key stakeholders, interested communities, organizations, businesses and individuals about the Cultural Districts program, the application process, and be a means whereby the public can offer feedback, and suggestions.

SOUND PLACES making a big noise!

Opelousas and Rivertown Kenner were chosen for this exciting new Creative Placemaking residency. Matched with WindSync from Houston and The Westerlies from Brooklyn, each community is hosting their ensemble for performing and special events during 2017.    

Look for Windsync Nov. 29-Dec. 3  in Opelousas.

The Westerlies completed their Rivertown Kenner residency Nov. 15-18.

See what Project for Public Spaces is saying about Sound Places

Cultural Districts Guidelines and Applications


Cultural Districts En Plein AirApril 2017Click to Read
Making Places Better - Preservation in PrintSept 2016Click to Read
Business of Culture and Art - ShreveportJan 2016Click to Read
Culture Important to ParishNov 2015Click to Read
Profitable Artists - BR Business ReportJune 2015Click to Read
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Small is Beautiful by Anne GadwaJuly 2014Click to Read
Hammond Celebrates Art and CultureApril 2014Click to Read
Sen. Landrieu in ArnaudvilleAugust 2013Click to Read
Leeville Fishing Village-DardenneSept 2013Click to Read
Shreveport Preservation Commission could save homesSept 2013Click to Read
Redevelopment of Freret StreetAugust 2013Click to Read
Rivertown KennerJuly 2013Click to Read
St Claude Main Street Arts-Culture ProgramMarch 2013Click to Read
Cultural district will help universityNovember 29, 2012Click to Read
Official: Growing cultural district good for economyAugust 23, 2012Click to Read
Need community development? Put your money on the arts by Anne GadwaSeptember, 2011Click to Read
Historic factory renovation in S. Broad Street CDApril, 2011Click to Read
LSU Minden Main Street WorkshopJanuary, 2011Click to Read
Lafayette Announces Tax Free Designation LafayetteMarch 10, 2010Click to Read
Lake Charles Cottage Shops Recognized as Cultural District Lake CharlesMarch 5, 2010Click to Read
New Mid City Cultural District in Baton Rouge Baton RougeFebruary 22, 2010Click to Read
Jimmy Robinson: Musician, Incubator and Advocate- New OrleansNovember 2, 2009Click to Read
Tax incentives hope to stimulate local art world- New OrleansOctober 4, 2009Click to Read
Slidell Announces 2009-10 Cultural Season- SlidellOctober, 2009Click to Read
Marigny Chosen as Great Neighborhood by APA New OrleansSeptember 2009Click to Read
District aim to boost arts, cultural commerce- ShreveportJune 7, 2009Click to Read
Byawater Art Lofts New OrleansJune 2, 2009Click to Read
HoumaJan 28, 2009Click to Read
Cooltown StudiosJan. 9, 2009Click to Read
Times PicayuneDec. 4, 2008Click to Read
Preservation in Print — Page 16Summer 2008Click to Read
Cultural Economy Tax Initiatives PackageJune 2007Click to Read

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Important Information about Original Art Tax Exemption Sales ~ Updated to show changes effective July 2016-June 2018

  • April 2016 Update-During the First Extraordinary Session of 2016 changes to the Original Art Sales Tax Exemption were passed. The exemption of 4% state sales tax for qualifying original art sales in Cultural Districts is suspended 4/1/16 through 6/30/18.
  • July 2016 - 3% state tax must be collected for original art sold in Cultural Districts. Local sales tax exemptions remain in place. See the April 2016 Update for details. 
  • Important Info - Special Events, Craft Shows, Trade Shows Questions concerning sales tax at special events and markets can be directed to        
  • Questions concerning the collection of the state sales tax and the applicable exemptions and exclusions in effect can be directed to
  • Revenue Department itemized listing of sales tax by exemption:
  • The Sales Tax Presentation contains illustrations of forms that must be used to report tax exempt sales of original art sold in Cultural Districts. The Notes for each slide answer questions and describe the process required to conduct and document sales.
  • The Cultural District Certificate of Exemption form should be completed by the art seller for each qualifying tax exempt sale of original art. Click here for Sales Tax Exemption Instructions.
  • All sales should be reported to the state and local government- The Louisiana State Sales Tax Report Form is also available for download at Louisiana Department of Revenue (LDR) website. Select the current R-1029 - Sales Tax Return.
  • Parish Sales Tax Report Forms are available for download through the LATA website. Below Click on the parish, scroll down and click on Forms, select the most recent Sales and Use Tax Report and Instructions.
  • Art Defined Q & A addresses common questions about what qualifies as original art under the definition adopted for use by the Cultural District program.
  • To request an Advisory Opinion about whether a work of art qualifies for sales tax exemption under the definition adopted for the Cultural District program submit the Original Art Advisory Opinion Form.  



July 1, 2017- The Office of the Lt. Governor and the Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism are pleased to announce certification of 5 new Cultural Districts. This brings the total number of Cultural District to 89, in 59 towns and 36 parishes in all corners of Louisiana, evidence that this is a successful initiative embraced by local governments and cultural stakeholders throughout the state.

The new districts certified in 2017 are:

  • Brandon Cultural Districts (W. Feliciana)
  • Carrollton Hollygrove Cultural District (Orleans)
  • Garyville Cultural District (St. John the Baptist)
  • LaPlace Cultural District (St. John the Baptist)
  • Reserve Cultural District (St. John the Baptist)
  • River Road Cultural District (St. John the Baptist)

For a complete list of Cultural Districts and maps of each district click here

For more information, questions or comments please email or call Gaye Hamilton, 225-342-8161,


Grant Options -  A list of government agencies, foundations, and organizations that offer grant opportunities. Grant Options

Creative Economy Data -  Facts and figures on the value of the creative economy Link to NASAA.

National Cultural District Exchange Toolkit - Tools and resources to help guide development and advancement of Cultural Districts. Link to AFTA

Community Visioning Workbook - Americans for the Arts (AFTA) created a DIY guide to conduct a Community Visioning Forum- to explore what a "healthy, vibrant, equitable community" is; what role arts can play in pursuing the vision of that idealized community; and how people, organizations and institutions can help achieve that vision. Link to PDF

Creative Placemaking Resources - A list of Articles, Books, Websites, Grants, and Organizations with a wealth of information about Creative Placemaking. Link to PDF.

Creative Placemaking Report - Arnaudville Cultural District is featured in the Mayor's Institute on City Design's white paper summarizes two decades of creative American placemaking, drawing on original economic research and case studies of pathbreaking initiatives in large and small cities, metropolitan to rural, as well as published accounts. Link to PDF

©2018 Louisiana Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism