Author: Cheré Coen

Look to the Skies

  This month, Louisiana skies will be ablaze with energy. The fifth annual CenterPoint Energy Red River Balloon Rally, presented by the Louisiana Office of Tourism, will take place June 12-14, sending local and regional balloons over various neighborhoods in…

A Historic Walk Through Lafayette

  Normally this time of year, downtown Lafayette is bursting with live music and the Downtown Alive concert series, in addition to festivals, Second Saturday ArtWalk and incredible scents of cuisine emanating from popular eateries. Galleries and restaurants are beginning…

On The Trail Of Our Elders

  Dr. Edwin Lewis Stephens, the first president of the University of Southwestern Louisiana Institute, now the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, was inspired by a Walt Whitman poem and started possibly the first organization for live oak trees. As…

In The Footsteps of Bonnie & Clyde

  During their crime spree in the early 1930s, the law despised Bonnie Elizabeth Parker and Clyde Chestnut Barrow, known as the outlaw gang, Bonnie & Clyde. The couple murdered at least nine police officers and four civilians as they…

Get Off The Beaten Path

As one of the oldest states in the union, founded in 1699 by French colonists and attracting numerous nationalities over its 300-plus history, not to mention an exemplary Native American heritage, Louisiana offers countless unique places to visit. It’s a…

Stately Travel

  This week marks the annual National Travel and Tourism Week, and while travel may be stymied due to the coronavirus, Louisiana tourist commissions are hard at work, ready to roll when the state officially opens. Until that wonderful day…

Farther Flung: Mountain Escape

Located in the northwest corner of Arkansas, Bentonville used to be a sleepy little town. Then Sam Walton got the great idea of helping people save money and live better, opening a five-and-dime called Walton’s on the square and beginning…

African America Historic Sites, Opelousas, Louisiana

  Digging into Louisiana genealogy led to me to understand an interesting history of Opelousas, the third oldest city in Louisiana following Natchitoches and New Orleans. The “poste” was established by the French colony’s government in 1720 for the French…

What’s Brewing

  Despite the recent economic turndown due to COVID-19, Louisiana craft breweries are staying online, producing new products — even creating hand sanitizers! Take Urban South Brewery of New Orleans. This month the company has released more than 20 unique…

Where the Buffalo Roamed

  In the heart of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette lies a swamp, complete with alligators, turtles, fish and blooming Louisiana irises. It’s a sight representative of South Louisiana’s swampy terrain. According to the University of Louisiana at Lafayette…

Who Visited Louisiana? – A Trivia Game

  Louisiana birthed many famous native sons and daughters, but other famous people traveled through our state, leaving an indelible mark. Since we’re stuck in our homes and unable to travel our beautiful region, here’s a trivia test to jog…

Sing the River in Baton Rouge

  When I worked for The Advocate newspaper around the turn of the 21st century, I parked in an undeveloped lot overlooking the Mississippi River in downtown Baton Rouge. Many of my colleagues would park in the non-descript gravel spaces…

Louisiana’s Water Heritage Trail

  You see them posted throughout South Louisiana but what exactly do those Atchafalaya National Heritage Trail signs mean? We’re here to explain, but even better to showcase the Atchafalaya Water Heritage Trail that accompanies the designation. The Atchafalaya National…

Maybe A Walk In The Woods Is In Order

We may be banished from crowds and busy public places, but that doesn’t mean we have to give up adventure. You can escape civilization and get back to nature at the many state parks and recreation areas located throughout Louisiana.…

A Day at The Watermark

  First came the bonuts, then the secret tour. It was going to be a fun afternoon. I was in Baton Rouge for Travel South, a convention designed to educate tour operators and travel writers like myself about the joys…

Getting Up Close and Personal With Louisiana Gators

Jennings has always been the place to view alligators and pet a few. Yes, you can pick these babies up and give them some lovin’. And now, the up close and personal gator experience has climbed up a notch. The…

Briarwood Nature Preserve

Nature is resilient. Life rebounds and prospers, with or without humans. Nothing seems more evident of this than Briarwood Nature Preserve northeast of Natchitoches, once the home of acclaimed Louisiana naturalist Caroline Dormon. A tornado ripped through the 210-acre preserve…

Louisiana Pet Parades

Mardi Gras parades have long gone to the dogs. We can’t celebrate the Carnival season without our pets! Yes, we parade anything and everything here in Louisiana. Most of the pet krewes features the canine variety but a few, such…

The Road to Spanish Lake

So many times when I’m driving through the Louisiana backroads, I catch a glimpse of bayous, lakes and rivers and vow to return to explore whatever lurks behind the trees and houses I pass. Heading from New Iberia to Lafayette…

Streaming Film Zeros In On Louisiana Filmmaking

I remember reading “The Moviegoer” by Walker Percy, in which the main character Binx Bolling in the award-winning novel remarks at how a place doesn’t exist unless it’s been in a film. Naturally, New Orleans exists, having been the setting…

In Praise Of The Song At My Window

Winter remains mild this year, so the birds at my window are the usual suspects — resident cardinal and wren couples, tufted titmouse, chickadees and the sparrows I can never name (they all look alike!) I’m waiting for the temperature…

Krewe of Harambee Celebrates 20 Years

In Shreveport, revelry goes double as the Krewe of Harambee celebrates Carnival along with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. And this year, the krewe marks its 20th anniversary. Festivities happen over the Martin Luther King Weekend, Jan. 19-20,…