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Wednesday, April 17, 2019

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Larose Civic Center celebrating sixth printing of popular cookbook

Larose Civic Center celebrating sixth printing of popular cookbook

There is excitement brewing at the Larose Civic Center as they prepare to order the sixth printing of the popular cookbook, “Down the Bayou”.

What began some twenty-six years ago when a group of local volunteers began collecting recipes to publish in a community cookbook as a fundraiser for the Bayou Civic Club has grown into a cultural phenomenon that has spread nationally.

The cultural identity of South Lafourche has now been defined by two unique publications, “Down the Bayou” and “Down the Bayou … and Back Again”.

Along with old and new family recipes, the books offer a glimpse into life in our corner of the world ‘down the bayou’. The picture on the cookbook cover is a hand printed original by local artist Myrna Waters.

The first book, published some twenty-six years ago, has now sold 22,000 copies and will be reprinted for the sixth time this year.

The second book, “Down the Bayou … and Back Again”, has 6000 books in print.

The estimated monetary contribution to the Civic Center is estimated to be approximately $450,000.

“Lots of local merchants sell the book for face value and donate the monies as a service to the Civic Center,” said Mary Rabb who has served as chairperson for the cookbook committee for decades.

Look for copies of both books at some 15 local banks, businesses and retail outlets including the cities of Houma, New Orleans, LeCompte, and Memphis, Tennessee, and at the Larose Civic Center office.

In about a month, 1500 new copies will arrive for distribution.

“Many people who bought the first book have used it so much, they’re looking forward to purchasing a new one,” said Rabb. “It was filled with original old-fashioned basic Cajun recipes like smothered potatoes.”

“Also, in this new edition, on page 4, will be a memorial honoring the late artist Myrna Waters who did the book cover, and committee members Ann Boulet and Martha “Cricket” Adams, who are no longer with us but were so instrumental in getting this book done,” continued Rabb.

Along with Rabb, Boulet and Adams, original cookbook committee members include Jasmine Ayo, Kelly Bouvier, Miriam Cheramie, Bennie Collins, Ruth Falgout, Mary Ann Guidry, Margie LeBlanc, Suzanne Robichaux and Diana Uzee, who are still active in distributing books locally.