Bayou Culture Collaborative logo

Helping to sustain the traditional cultures of coastal Louisiana

Workshops and mini-apprenticeships to help to sustain the traditional knowledge of coastal communities affected by land loss are being offered by the Louisiana Division of the Arts Folklife Program in collaboration with the Louisiana Folklore Society and other organizations.

Bayou Traditions

Workshops can focus on traditional knowledge of about the land and wetlands in addition to traditions about all aspects of life. Tradition bearers could come from any traditional culture -- from Native Americans to those descended from the earliest settlers to most recent immigrants. See examples of traditions here.  

Bayou Culture Collaborative Events

Events have included workshops to teach a specific tradition and writing workshops about sense of place. Other workshops have focused on teaching skills to document traditions -- interviewing, photography and video skills in addition to how to present research to the public, archiving, and funding.  

These workshops will offer strategies to help ensure traditions are passed on to future generations. Most events are free, but some require registration because space is limited. 

See the workshops and events that the collaborative has supported in the past here.  

Would you like to offer a workshop or mini-apprenticeship?

We are planning workshops for the coming year and can cover workshop expenses such as facilitators and supplies. If you are interested in hosting a workshop, class, or presentation, contact: Maida Owens, Louisiana Folklife Program,, 225-342-8178.  

June 8 and 15

Beginners Introduction to Wood Carving

 Terrebonne Folklife Culture Center, 217 Goode Street, Houma, LA 70360 
    10 am to 3 pm. Lunch provided.
Description: The seminar will provide each student with the materials and tools needed to participate in a two (2) day class and help you find our inner wood carver. After the seminar is completed, the Culture Center offers on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5-9pm continuing wood carving classes. Please contact Anne Picou for more information at 985-873-6408.
Collaborator(s):   Terrebonne Parish Consolidated Government, Houma Downtown Development Corporation 
Facilitator:  Wood carver Gene Hebert along with participants in the Tuesday and Thursday classes.
Registration:   This workshop is free. Participants can apply by sending an email to to get the application. Or mail to Folklife Culture Center, 317 Goode Street, Houma, La. 70360.

June 22

Writing on the Bayou

 St Charles Parish,  East Regional Library, 160 W Campus Dr, Destrehan, LA 70047 
  12 p.m. - 2 p.m.
Description: Come explore your memories of your community in a two and a half hour writing workshop. The session is split into two parts and starts with a concentrated study of identity-centered, place-based, nonfiction writing, from national and regional writers. Participants will brainstorm ideas for their own writings or discuss ongoing projects. The second part of the session is comprised of a hands-on writing workshop in which participants will create their own place-based Louisiana nonfiction writing. Attendees will receive guidance and individual feedback on their writing. No writing experience is necessary. Writers of all levels are welcome. A writing journal will be provided.
Collaborator(s):   Center for Bayou Studies, Nicholls State University; St Charles Parish Library  
Facilitator:  Michael Martin, Nicholls State University English Department
Registration:   This workshop is free. Participants can register by sending an email to   or showing up the day of the workshop.

June 20 and 27

Traditional Houma Indian Palmetto Weaving

 United Houma Nation Building, Houma, LA
Description: The United Houma Nation will teach tribal members the three traditional methods of palmetto weaving, including the 4-strand or jigsaw style, the 7 or 9 strand technique, and the half-hitch coil basket.
Collaborator(s):   United Houma Nation  
Facilitators:  Louise Billiot and Janie Luster, United Houma Nation
Registration:   This workshop is for tribal members.

June 22

Traditional Plant Storytelling and Watercolor Workshop

 Pointe-au-Chien Indian Tribal Building, 3798 Highway 665, Montegut, LA 
    10 am to 5 pm. Lunch provided.
Description: Residents of communities along lower Hwy 665 in Terrebonne Parish are invited to explore traditional uses of plants and then create watercolor paintings of them for a booklet to help preserve traditional knowledge of the area. The morning will focus on sharing stories about traditional plants of the area. The afternoon will be a watercolor workshop for us to paint our plants. Show and Tell will be at 4 pm followed by dinner. Visual artist Mia Feuer and ethnobotanist Liza Kachko have both worked with the communities in this area on previous projects. Mia Feuer will guide participants in how to utilize watercolor and drawing techniques, as well as assist in the installation of the resulting exhibition in the community center. Liza Kachko will provide expertise on the culturally significant and traditionally used plants. Including identifying, and collecting plants for the workshop.
Collaborator(s):   Pointe au Chiens Indian Tribe, Bayou Regional Arts Council  
Facilitators:  Mia Feuer, artist; Liza Kachko, ethnobotanist; Theresa Dardar, PACIT tribal leader
Registration:   Registration required. This workshop is free for 35 residents of all ages in communities along lower HWY 665 in Lower Terrebonne and Lafourche parishes. To register, contact Theresa Dardar,, 985-688-8145.

June 24-28

Pointe au Chien Indian Tribe Culture Camp

 Pointe-au-Chien Indian Tribal Building, Montegut, LA 

Description: The Pointe au Chien Indian Tribe Culture Camp (PACIT) will focus on traditional arts and crafts including decorative crafts such as regalia and shawls, food traditions such as cooking, and occupational crafts such as crab traps and blow guns. This camp is offered to tribal members.

Collaborator(s):   Pointe au Chiens Indian Tribe, Bayou Regional Arts Council  
Facilitators:  Patty Ferguson-Bohnee, PACIT tribal leader
Registration:   This workshop is for tribal members.

Existing Documentation

Find essays on the Folklife in Louisiana website and other sources that address traditions in Louisiana's coastal communities here.

Collaborators and Funders

This project is a collaboration between Louisiana Folklore Society, the Louisiana Division of the Arts Folklife Program, the South Louisiana Wetlands Discovery Center, Nicholls State University Center for Bayou Studies, University of Louisiana at Lafayette Center for Louisiana Studies, and Bayou Regional Arts Council.

The collaborative is funded with support from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area, the Louisiana Division of the Arts and the Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism.

If you would like to know more, contact the Folklife Program director or explore the Folklife in Louisiana website.

©2019 Louisiana Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism