Bayou Lafourche Folk Life and Heritage Museum is a nonprofit organization founded in 1994.
The organization's mission is to preserve and teach the history of the Bayou Lafourche Region. The building, located at 110 Main Street, formerly housed the Merchants and Planters Bank in 1910.
Entergy donated the building to accommodate the museum which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The museum offers a unique learning experience for all ages. BLFHM's main attraction and the permanent exhibit is the Bayou Excursion of 1910. Patrons can experience a colorful anthology with the turn of a ship’s wheel, which activates a large panoramic mural reflecting “life on the bayou.”
There is a variety of other displays including a replica of a small Cajun cottage, antique hand tools, typewriters, war memorabilia and even an original telecommunication switchboard, where operators once established connections manually with electrical cords.
Photos hung on the wall tell a historical story of bayou life and its culture.
As you move through the exhibit rooms, you realize how much more challenging daily tasks were to those living along the bayou. However, folks back in those times knew nothing else. To them, it was simply the way of life.
Many of the items displayed at the venue are on loan to the organization by local families.
Board Member DeeDee Gaubert said, “We are currently working on a ‘Music on the Bayou’ exhibit, which will open in spring of 2018. If anyone is interested in lending the museum any music memorabilia or any other items related to Cajun culture, we would love to look at what they have. We return all pieces to the owner at the end of one year, or if the lender has photos, we can Xerox them and return the original to the owner immediately."
On the second floor, there is a new Mardi Gras exhibit, which is a must see! Renovations are currently underway for several of the other upstairs rooms. The spaces will eventually hold additional displays.
The organization pays its operational costs through a nominal entrance fee to the museum, and through several fundraisers they hold throughout the year such as; Give Nola Day, a twenty-four-hour giving day held in May through social media, and the Main Street Market arts and crafts event each spring.
One of their most successful fundraisers, Savor the Flavor, is marking its fifth year this year, and will take place this Saturday, September 16, at the American Legion Home in Lockport.
The cooking competition is an all-adult event where local chefs cook fabulous dishes for your tasting pleasure. Patrons attending will receive a voting ticket to submit their pick for best dish. The winning team receives a "Savor the Flavor" cooking apron, a plaque, and of course, bragging rights!
"There are six cooking teams so far, and we have two openings left for the competition. Time is drawing near so if anyone is interested in entering they can contact me at the museum,” said Dee Dee.
“In addition to guests voting on their favorite dish, we have several great items this year for our silent and live auction. One item is a homemade dessert of the month for ten months. We also have sports memorabilia, custom paintings, an ice chest full of filet fish, a deer and cheese basket, a garden basket, and a Jello shot basket. Simply said, there is something for everyone!” said DeeDee.
When asked about the organization’s needs, Gaubert responded, “Our greatest need is for people to become a member of the museum. The memberships help with the overall daily operational costs, renovations, and repairs.”
“We have several different levels to meet just about any budget,” she continued. “Adults can become a member for $20, senior membership is only $7.50, and a family membership is $25. There are other memberships available too for less than $10.”
BLFHM is looking for an IT volunteer who may be able to assist them with getting a new website published.
DeeDee said, "The old site has been down for quite some time and is no longer accessible. It is time for a new and improved upgraded site, and it would be great to have one up and running for people to find us and learn more about the museum.”
Gaubert would like readers to know the museum is open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m., with the last tour scheduled at 3:30 both days. The door fee for adults is $5, and children's entrance fee is $1.
Don’t forget, BLFHM's Savor the Flavor event is on Saturday, Sept. 16, from 6:30 p.m. until 9 p.m. at the American Legion Home, 921 Veterans Street in Lockport.
There are a limited number of tickets still available, but they are going fast! Tickets are $20 per person and include a sampling of each dish, wine, water, or soft drink.
The event is also offering for the first time, reserved seating for parties of six or more at $30 per person. Call DeeDee at 985-532-5909 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Posted on Tue, September 12, 2017
by Holly McKeon, Contributing Writer