Helping to sustain the traditional cultures of coastal Louisiana

In collaboration with the Louisiana Folklore Society and other organizations, the Folklife Program is offering activities to help to sustain the traditional knowledge of coastal communities affected by land loss. We are especially interested in supporting traditions that are endangered due to land loss. The activities will be at a variety of locations throughout the area, and will vary from workshops, classes, and presentations about local traditions or how to sustain them.

Bayou Traditions

Traditional knowledge of the coast includes those about the land and wetlands in addiiton to traditions about all aspects of life. Tradition bearers would come from any of the traditional cultures from those descended from the earliest settlers to most recent immigrants. See examples of traditions here.  

Bayou Culture Collaborative Events

Events have included collecting stories workshops in Lafourche Parish, gumbo making at the Chauvin Folk Art Festival, carving classes, sense of place writing workshops, Mardi Gras costume making, and more. A four-part documentation workshop series taught how to document traditions with 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 Calendar of Events for details about upcoming workshops. 

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

↓ See 2019 Schedule of Events
May 31

Writing on the Bayou

  1403 N. Bayou Drive, Golden Meadow, Louisiana 70357-2513 
            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; Golden Meadow Historical Library  
Facilitator:    Michael Martin, Nicholls State University English Department
Registration:    This workshop is free. Participants can register by sending an email to   michael.martin@nicholls.edu  or showing up the day of the workshop.


June 1

Writing on the Bayou

      10 am to 12 pm
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; Terrebonne Parish Public Library 
Facilitator:  Michael Martin, Nicholls State University English Department
Registration:  This workshop is free. Participants can register by sending an email to michael.martin@nicholls.edu or showing up the day of the workshop.


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 apicou@tpcg.org to get the application. Or mail to Folklife Culture Center, 317 Goode Street, Houma, La. 70360.
 

↑ Hide the 2019 Schedule




Workshops, Classes, Presentations

If you are interested in hosting a workshop, class, or presentation, contact: Maida Owens, Louisiana Folklife Program, folklife@crt.la.gov, 225-342-8178. These are only some of the possible options.
  • Fait à la main/Made By Hand -- Classes to learn arts and crafts, such as duck carving, basket weaving using local resources
  • Performing the Traditions -- Classes to learn traditions such as singing songs in French
  • Presentations about the traditions and culture of coastal communities by community scholars and other researchers
  • Writing on the Bayou - Exploring your memories and sense of place 
  • Make a Community Quilted Wall Hanging
  • Writing poetry - Exploring your memories and sense of place in French or English 
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