The best food around at popular Louisiana festivals

As springtime quickly approaches, many locals look forward to fun, relaxing times, and most importantly some of the best food in the entire country at several of the upcoming festivals around the state of Louisiana.

Many of the annual festivals around Louisiana match the colorful essence that harmonizes with the unique culture of the state. Heritage and folk, film and media, arts and craft, music and food are all featured in various events held each year. The food at every festival has been the main attraction for me since I was younger.

This weekend kicks off several festivals that include amazing cuisines. Although the weather determines how beautiful the weekend ends up being, a lot of the festivals will still remain filled with many things to do and learn about.

Sicilian food lovers are in for a treat this weekend, as the beautiful town of Independence will host The Independence Sicilian Heritage Festival in Tangipahoa Parish. The eighth annual fest educates visitors about the rich Sicilian heritage that remains there until this day. Independence, “Little Italy” of Louisiana, was created as a result of the New Orleans to Jackson route of the Great Northern Railroad in the 1880s. It is a fun festival to enjoy music, cultural experiences and tasty cuisine. This festival is held down the street where I attended high school, and has grown to be a favorite of mine. You will want to try the mouthwatering spaghetti and charbroiled oysters.

For those that would rather remain local this weekend, Choctow Volunteers Fireman’s Fair will be held in Thibodaux. The free event will be held the entire weekend starting tomorrow at 6 p.m., and is the department’s largest fundraiser for the operations and needs of the fire department. Tons of tasty Cajun food, music, dancing and carnival rides dominate the event for the weekend. The morning of the final day, a parade concludes the event.

Although the oysters at the Sicilian Festival are my favorite, about 10 minutes north of Independence is where the parish seat and also the annual Amite Oyster Festival are held. For seafood lovers obsessed with oysters, you should circle this the weekend beginning March 18. Hosted in downtown Amite, fresh oysters are served and prepared in various ways with live entertainment from various local Cajun, reggae, and country artists. Many of the locals look forward to oyster scavenger hunt and oyster-eating contests.

For Louisiana seafood lovers who especially crave crawfish, which if I had to guess would be the majority of the state, you may be looking forward to the end of the month for the Louisiana Crawfish Festival. Held the weekend of March 31, a reported 30,000 pounds of crawfish is boiled for the event. Crawfish bread, crawfish pasta, crawfish pastries, crawfish rice and crawfish jambalaya, you name it and if crawfish can be added, it’ll be there. Along with great food, live Cajun music, rides and games games attract crowds from all over to Chalmette. Admission for the event is five dollars.

One thing about Louisiana, especially South Louisiana, is that the topic of food is taken seriously. Whether you consider yourself a food enthusiast or just looking for a good time for family, fun and music, Louisiana festivals are a place to enjoy it all.