Everyone’s Cajun at Audubon Zoo’s Swamp Fest in New Orleans

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Audubon Zoo's Swamp Fest in New Orleans is fun for the entire family. The two-day festival celebrates South Louisiana with food, music and art.

Everyone’s invited to Audubon Zoo for Louisiana Swamp Fest, the Zoo’s signature festival spotlighting food, music and history of Louisiana, November 5 and 6, 2011.

This family-style festival is a joyous celebration of South Louisiana, with Cajun cuisine, Cajun and Zydeco music, cultural demonstrators and one-of-a-kind crafts – all against the unique backdrop of Audubon Zoo in beautiful Uptown New Orleans.

Louisiana Heritage presentations dive deep into subjects such as the meaning of Creole and Cajun, the evolution of the Cajun fiddle and the history of the culture and ecology of our region - featuring a Zydeco workshop and a Cajun instrument petting zoo!

NEW this year, the festival features fried delicacies including deep fried bacon-wrapped shrimp and deep fried Oreo cookies. AND – Swamp Fest goes a little bit country, presenting Christian Serpas & Ghost Town, Washboard Rodeo, 90 West and Jenny Brooks along with Cajun and Zydeco superstars including Nathan and the Zydeco Cha Chas and Pine Leaf Boys. The best New Orleans family attractions would not be complete without great food and music, so bring your children to celebrate Cajun culture at Audubon Zoo.

How do you like your shrimp? The region’s famous food takes center stage, including shrimp and grits, shrimp pasta, soft shell crab po-boys, fried catfish, and alligator two ways – fried and on a stick. For the less adventurous, standard Zoo fare such as hot dogs, hamburgers, ice cream and the traditional Roman candy are all on the menu, too.

Visitors may take some indigenous swamp culture home, with arts and crafts such as oil paintings reflecting Louisiana life, jewelry, jams and preserves, candles and paintings on driftwood. Cultural demonstrations at the Louisiana Swamp Exhibit feature wood carving and basket weaving. This memorabilia will ensure that you never forget your New Orleans family vacation.

Everyone is invited to watch or join in as dancers from around the area enjoy a musical line-up unique to this special part of the country. Don’t know how to Cajun dance – or do you want to learn Zydeco? Check out the free lessons in the Louisiana Swamp Exhibit.

JUST A LITTLE SWAMP FEST HISTORY

The Louisiana Swamp Festival was conceived around the time of the opening of the award-winning Louisiana Swamp Exhibit, a five-acre mini-zoo located on the grounds of Audubon Zoo. With its languid lagoons and abundant cypress trees, the Swamp Exhibit is a true urban swamp. Opportunistic birds know they can find a free meal there, and the turtles are so numerous they barely fit on the floating logs. The last alligator feeding of the season always happens during Swamp Fest, drawing big crowds to the Swamp Exhibit boardwalk. Guests will see nutria, otters, snakes and catfish along their way to the ethereal white alligators – huge, blue-eyed gators unlike any other in the world. The assortment of animals, food, history, and music makes Audubon’s Swamp Fest one of the most fun and educational things to do in New Orleans with your kids.

The Swamp Exhibit, one of the most interesting New Orleans family attractions, amazes locals and visitors with the bounty of wildlife literally in our own backyard while helping to keep the culture of this unique place alive and vibrant.

Audubon Zoo, a facility of Audubon Nature Institute, is located at 6500 Magazine Street in New Orleans. Admission to the Louisiana Swamp Festival is included in regular admission, which is $14.95 for adults, $9.95 children (2 -12) and $11.95 Senior (65+).

Audubon Zoo members are admitted free of charge. No outside food or beverage allowed during special events and festivals.

For information on the Louisiana Swamp Festival at Audubon Zoo, call 504-581-4629 or
visit http://www.auduboninstitute.org.

About Audubon Nature Institute
The not-for-profit Audubon Nature Institute operates parks and museums in New Orleans dedicated to Celebrating the Wonders of Nature: Audubon Zoo, Audubon Aquarium of the Americas, Entergy IMAX® Theatre, Audubon Center for Research of Endangered Species, Freeport-McMoRan Audubon Species Survival Center, Wilderness Park, Woldenberg Riverfront Park, Audubon Park and Audubon Insectarium.

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