Vermilionville Living History Museum & Folklife Park Website.
Bayou Vermilion

Vermilionville Living History Museum & Folklife Park Website.

For over 20 years Bayou Vermilion District has provided a valuable service for the citizens of Lafayette Parish, the heart of Acadiana. The Master Plan for the Bayou Vermilion District recognizes the Bayou Vermilion as one of Lafayette’s most unique assets. The work performed by the District serves to beautify, conserve and manage sites along the bayou ensuring the preservation and enhancement of the natural and cultural resources in Lafayette Parish.


The Vermilionville Living History Museum & Folklife Park is an operating unit within Bayou Vermilion District created to preserve and represent Acadian, Creole, and Native American cultures within the region. It provides Lafayette residents and visitors from all over the world a wonderful opportunity to view a lifestyle as it occured during a time period spanning from 1765 to 1890. Vermilionville is the largest physical representation of Acadian and Creole culture in the world. The park sits on a beautiful tree-covered 23-acre site on the banks of the Bayou Vermilion in the heart of Lafayette, providing a place for music, food expression, cultural exchange, historic architecture and much more.

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Mathesh Kandra

The location of Vermilionville adjacent to the Bayou Vermilion lost some importance as the railroad provided a better means of transporting people and goods to and from other places. Later the paving of highways leading to Lafayette in 1936 further reduced any commercial dependance on the Bayou Vermilion.

Quality of Bayou Vermilion

Improving the recreation quality of the Bayou Vermilion is an important mission for the Bayou Operations Team. Capturing and removing stormwater trash and other debris from the water and banks of the Bayou Vermilion dramatically improves the Bayou’s water quality. Working closely with Lafayette Consolidated Government, Bayou Operations maintains several public boat launches and parks along the Bayou Vermilion.

The Bayou Vermilion District maintains and enhances life along the Bayou Vermilion for all residents of Lafayette Parish and Acadiana, and provides the best in bayou recreation and cultural history to our citizens and for visitors who regularly travel here from all over the world.

We hope you enjoy our website and the helpful information it provides.

News And Updates 

Working out in Bayou Vermilion

Bayou Vermilion is a place filled with people who are dedicated to being fit. It still remains a mystery how people get into fitness at a very young age. Some say that they watch people day in day out working out and burning calories on a daily basis. Hence it subconsciously it impacts their minds and drives them towards being fit.

It is a fact that Bayou Vermilion has a lot to offer when it comes to tourism and a lot of other things. But there is also this other side of the place which many fail to notice. The place provides amazing opportunities for everyone to be fit. When we say fit, it refers to every aspect of being fit which includes physical activities, sports, gyms, healthy diet and a lot more.

Places to workout in Bayou Vermilion

It is the tendency of many people to associate workout with gyms and heavyweights. But the truth is that you cannot confine workout only with gyms. The bitter truth that we all need to accept is that running in an open place is better is better than running on the treadmill. The public parks at Bayou Vermilion serve as great spots to indulge in workout activities. Indulging in workouts with rich greenery and pure air has a lot of positive impacts on our body and mind.


The district of Bayou Vermilion houses theepublic parks. They are the Beaver Park in the Plantation road, The Rotary Pointin West Bayou Pkwy and the South Side Park. All of the parks are maintainedproperly by Government in partnerships with some firms. These parks serve asthe best places for people to indulge in physical activities to improve theirfitness. You can also see regular fitness camps conducted in these parks.

Paddling is one activity that takes a lot both physically and mentally. Fortunately, the district of Bayou Vermilion is blessed with five spots where people can paddle. The places where people can paddle are Lake Charlo, Lake Martin, Bayou Teche, Palmetto Island State Park, and Indian Bayou. Paddling is one of the very common activities that people involve themselves when it comes to fitness. Paddling has a lot of impacts which include core conditioning, aerobic fitness, weight loss, better cardiovascular functioning and improvement of the respiratory systems.


Area Organized Sports

The Government is partnering with a lot oforganizations and fitness enthusiasts to organize a lot of sports activitiesfor people of all ages.  Every year thereis active participation of people in these activities. The best part is thatthey do not participate just for the fun of it, they take necessary trainingand commit themselves to participate in these activities. They have both indoorand outdoor games.

When we speak about area organized sports the no way that we can skip the Cajun Country Half Marathon. This is one of the sports activities that people participate in large numbers. This is not just a normal marathon there are a lot of rules and regulations. It is mandatory that the participants must run at least a mile in fifteen minutes. Every year the local people and people all over the world participate in this marathon.

Gyms and workout centers

When it comes to being fit, it is an undeniable fact that the gyms and workout centers play an important role.  The Bayou Vermilion district houses more than sixty gyms. Every gym is equipped with the latest workout equipment and has experienced and certified trainers. Most of the gyms have very positive reviews and are committed to keeping their members in perfect shape.

Healthy Diet

Having a healthy diet is a quintessential part of working out and being fit. The district of Bayou Vermilion has a lot of restaurants that serve healthy food.

Deano’s Pizza

In this list, Deano’s Pizza will definitely clinch the first position. Pizza which considered as the ultimate junk food is served in a healthy version at Deano’s. It is one of the few places in the world that offers gluten-free pizza. 

Smoked Yellowfin tuna taco bowl

A restaurant named Taco sisters offers some delicious and healthy dishes. Their signature dish Smoked Yellowfin tuna taco bowl is a low calorie, high protein dish that provides a proper serving of vitamin B.

tuna taco

Plate Lunch

Sandra’s Café is known for its organic, high fiber, low-calorie plate lunch. It is one of the most preferred restaurants for many fitness enthusiasts. The most desired plate includes turkey meatloaf, vegetable soup, and spinach.

Portobello Sandwich

Café Lola is one of the favorite restaurants which is able to hit the perfect balance of being healthy and tasty. The menu of Café Lola has a lot of healthy options from salads and sandwiches.The Portobello Sandwich of Café Lola definitely needs a special mention. It isa marinated mushroom sandwich which is considered to the healthiest sandwichever.

Honorary Mentions

There are also other restaurants that serve very healthy food like the Tokyo Japanese Steak House, and La Pizzeria.

Best Places to Visit in Lafayette 102

Lafayette is a place that has a lot to offer. The amazing places are an absolute treat for the eyes. The common question that every person who is visiting Lafayette would be asking is “what are the places to visit in Lafayette LA?” We have tried our level best to answer this question by listing out the places that can be visited in Lafayette LA.

Downtown Lafayette Museums

Generally, museums are considered to beboring. But there are good possibilities that your perceptions might changeafter visiting the museums at Lafayette. They can render an amazing experienceand be a delight in many aspects. The ideal place to start would be AcadianaCentre which could give the perfect kick-start for your tour. Other museumslike the Children’s Museum of Acadiana and Lafayette Science Museum andPlanetarium can give you an experience of a lifetime.

 Blue Moon Saloon

The Blue Moon Saloon is one of the popular and iconic names in Lafayette.  It was opened in April 2002. It is located on the back porch of the Blue Moon Guesthouse. It holds a very important place in America when it comes to music. The saloon serves as a meeting spot for travelers, artists, and politicians. There are good possibilities that you might meet some famous personality in the saloon. Even though some big names in the world visit this place often, the saloon has a very casual environment and an ambiance where people can have fun. You can dance, drink and have the time of your life at Blue Moon Saloon.

blue moon

Jean Lafayette National Historical Park and Acadian cultural Centre

Are you curious about the history and origins of Acadian (Caujuns)?

Cultural Center

The Acadian Cultural Centre is the placewhere you can find all the answers. It furnishes you with every detail aboutthe origins, settlements, migration and the unique culture that they had. Thereare also some engaging events like ranger programs in which you canparticipate. The films, documentaries, and the exhibits paint the perfectpicture of the history and their traditions. If you have kids with you, theywould love to participate in exploring the mysteries of Atchafalaya Basin.

Sans Souci Craft Gallery

Prepare to be amazed by the mind-blowing artistry of the local artisans. It will not be a surprise if you are captivated by the displays. The display consists of pottery, jewelry, glass, textile, metal works, and wooden carvings. These displays are famous throughout the world for their minute details. The 1200 square foot space in Lafayette is one of the oldest buildings in LA. It was built in the year 1886. The building itself has a history of 100 years. The building was renovated in 2001, and now it functions as the place that displays the work of Louisiana Craft Guild members.

Vermilion Ville

Vermilion Ville is a humongous 23-acre historic property that is located in the banks of Bayou Vermilion.  The place is known for portraying the Native American culture that lasted between 1765 and 1890. If a place that holds a history of 125 years cannot excite you, nothing else can. The place has live music, dance lessons, explanatory tours, and gift shops that can engage you in a lot of ways.

Lafayette Food that you’ll fall in love

Every place in this world is unique in its own way. There are no second thoughts on the fact that the uniqueness of the place is what draws people towards it. The uniqueness of any place cannot be confined to a single aspect. It can be considered in various angles.

The one common category that is different in almost every place in the world is the cuisine and the food they offer. To experiment and to have a new experience with food is one of the most exciting activities that you can indulge yourself during travel. A vacation or travel might have a lot of agendas, but it is mandatory that you allocate time to try out the local cuisine. Here some of the must-try food at Lafayette.


You must have heard that people havedifferent perspectives when it comes to thoughts. Well, when it comes toCrawfish people have different ways of naming it. Some of the commonly usednames are crayfish, crawdads, and mudmugs. Crawfishes are crustaceans that arefound in large numbers in swamps and marshlands of southern Louisiana. Eventhough they are very common in the area, their peak season is during the monthsfrom December to June. During this time of the year, you will literally beflabbergasted by the number of restaurants that serve this lip-smacking dish.

craw fish


Boudin is one of the household names in the local cuisine. It is a savory dish that is the fusion of rice, pork, onions, and bell peppers. In most of the cases it is served in the shape of a sausage. It is ok to relish every moment and devour every bite of it, but make sure that you eat it when it is hot. A boudin can present itself in various avatars like golden fried balls or the patty for the burger. The best time in the year to treat your taste buds with boudin is during the month of October when Lafayette’s Boudin Cook-Off takes place.

Lafayette Plate Lunch

Ehheh…. Whats up Doc? Wana grab some yummy Lafayette Plate Lunch?

Lafayette Plate Lunch is a wholesome dishthat can fill your tummy and your heart. It is generally served with tenderrabbit meat with rice that offers a good local flavor. There are very fewrestaurants that serve them with short ribs. The perfect combination of meat,rice, vegetables, pepper gravy, and bread makes it a dish that you cannotafford to miss. One of the important facts about this dish is that it has a hundredyears of history to it. It was created for the working class to provide themwith the essential nutrients.



Gumbo is one dish that has a lot of versions. The dish changes according to the cook and the ingredients that he or she uses. So probably jump from one restaurant to another you will end up having different versions of Gumbo. The best part of Gumbo is that it doesn’t matter what ingredient that they use, it always ends up being delicious. The cooks use crab, oysters, shrimp, chicken, sausage, and tomato or tomato soup. The redolence is absolutely captivating, and there is no person who wouldn’t fall for it. 

Ways to Go Green and Save Green

The earth has given us so many things for years, and all we can do is continue to exploit it for our own selfish needs. If we continue like this, we will have no future, and many people realized this and started to bring about awareness. We slowly began to hear terms like sustainability, ecological balance, depletion, recycling etc. and started to wonder what those terms really meant. Even though people hear these terms, they are not bothered about it as they think how the melting of snow caps somewhere far away would affect you? People believe that to save the world they need to do something big, but everyone can do something small in their homes, and it will make a significant impact on the environment.

The following are some of the ways of going green which every individual can do:

Save energy at home:

One of the first things you can do to go green is to change the incandescent light bulbs in your home as these lights consume more power. You can replace them with compact fluorescent light bulbs which consume lesser energy, and it also has a longer lifetime. Encourage the people at your home to switch off appliances which are not in use.

Save water:

You can do small things like installing sink aerators which will reduce the amount of water which comes out of the tap. Instead of taking showers every day try to have a bucket bath once or twice a week to save water. Get a low-flow showerhead fixed so that the amount of water that falls is reduced. If you have a garden try to use the method of drip irrigation as it is one of the best ways to water plants and you will also save a lot of water.

Use less fuel and gas:

Do not take your vehicle for everything. Consider walking for short distances as it is good for your health and you will end up saving a lot of fuel. Try to use the public transport as much as possible and also considering sharing your ride with others.

Do not waste food:

There are lots of people out there who do not know where their next meal will come from. If you are blessed with three meals a day, try not to waste it and if you think you cannot eat a lot, then reduce the amount you take in your plate.

Avoid using plastic:

Plastic materials might be available very cheap, but you should know that it takes years to degrade and it can pollute the environment. Try to use an alternative material. You can carry a cloth bag or a recycled paper bag instead of using plastic. Plastics get clogged in the water bodies, and this can affect the lives of many sea creatures.

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Best Places to Visit in Lafayette 101

Lafayette is a small city located in the southwest of Indianapolis and the city brims with adventures. The Cajun village has many things in store for you and your family. You can explore the Acadian Village, visit the art museum, take a tour of the Avery Island and do many more exciting things. The following are some of the best places to visit in Lafayette:

Acadian Village:

The Acadian is a private park in the city, and it was established in the 1970s. The village aims to preserve the Acadian history and culture, and you must not miss visiting this park. The town has about seven buildings which were built in the 19th century, and it has been passed on to the generations. You will be able to see the authentic constructions and the techniques used to build the buildings during the 19th century. You will be able to see high peaked roofs, mud walls, cypress wood and wooden pegs that were used for construction. Many tours are available, and you can also rent this place for private functions or even weddings.

Paul and Lulu Hilliard University Art Museum:

The art museum is one of the top tourist attractions in the city, and it was established in the year 1964. The museum was named after the people who donated money for the construction of the museum. You will be able to see more than 4000 art pieces which are from the 18th century to 21st century. There are artworks from other continents like Asia and Europe.

Children’s Museum:

The children’s Museum at Lafayette gives your children a hands-on experience on various things, and they get practical knowledge in many subjects such as health, money, food etc. The museum was founded in the year 1990, and it offers several classes and workshops for kids. The museum is a great place to take your kids, and they also have special events like garage sales, art stomps, Halloween parties and many more.

Avery Island:

The island is famous for McIlhenny Tabasco. You can take a tour of the factory and also taste the Cajun food from the native restaurants. It is a romantic place, and it is an excellent place for weddings and honeymoons.

Cajun Food tour:

Caujan Food Tour Company takes you on a tour and brief you about the culture and history of the native people. You will be divided into groups of 14, and you will be taken around the village to taste Caujan dishes.

Acadian Cultural Centre:

The city Lafayette has a rich Caujan culture, and if you happen to visit this city, you make an effort to learn about their culture and lifestyle. The Acadian Cultural Centre is one of the perfect places for that, and you will get to know how the Caujans settled in this locality. There are many ranger programs, films, guided tours for tourists and many special events are also conducted.

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Vermilionville Living History Museum & Folklife Park

The Vermilionville Living History Museum & Park was formed by the Bayou Vermilion District to preserve and demonsrate the cultural resources of the region. The Bayou Vermilion District strives to preserve the natural and cultural resources of Lafayette Parish and surrounding region. The park at Vermilionville is a clear example in the preservation of our cultural resources and one of the largest representations of Acadian & Creole culture in the world.

Vermilionville, a heritage and folklife museum, portrays the rich cultures of the Cajuns, Creoles and Native Americans. On the banks of the Bayou Vermilion, the historic village contains 19 structures, including seven original homes, which are filled with artifacts reflecting life in the Acadiana area between 1765 and 1890. A detailed interpretive walking brochure or personal guides escort visitors through the village. In many of the structures, costumed historical interpreters authentically demonstrate traditional crafts or musical styles with a distinctly French accent. Cooking demonstrations, a full-service restaurant and a gift shop enhance the experience. Bayou boat tours are available March through May and September through November. Vermilionville’s quaint 1800s setting provides a charming atmosphere for school tours, group tours, reunions, business luncheons, crawfish boils, barbecues, retirement parties, recognition banquets, holiday socials, birthday parties, rehearsal dinners, weddings, receptions, dances, musical performances and more!

Vermilionville Facilities

Performance Center

  • 2,760 square feet.
  • Modeled after an old-time cotton gin.
  • Offers a stage with full stage lighting and sound, a wonderful old cypress dance floor and is climate controlled year round.
  • Seating capacity for 150 when set with wooden tables and ladder-back chairs leaving space for a dance floor area.
  • Seating capacity for 300 without a dance floor area.
  • Maximum capacity of 800 large exterior doors can be opened creating a unique space for your event additional seating will require rental of tents, tables and chairs.
  • Day rental – Available from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. (minimum of 3 hours), plus food and beverages. Wide range of choices including buffet-style meals, seafood boils, barbecue, full-bar services. (Note: These times are not available for wedding receptions.)
  • Evening rental – Available from 5 p.m. (minimum of 3 hours), plus food and beverages. Wide range of choices including buffet-style meals, seafood boils, barbecue, full-bar services.

The Restaurant (La Cuisine de Maman)

  • 1,357 square feet.
  • Located directly off of the courtyard, the restaurant is styled as the overseer’s home on the plantation.
  • Offers large windows, high ceilings and additional dining in a glass-enclosed back porch with a view of the bayou. The entire restaurant is climate controlled, has cypress wood floors, wooden tables and cow hide chairs.
  • Maximum seating capacity is 75, with 45 seated in front (874 sq. ft.) and 30 seated in glass lined dining room overlooking the Bayou Vermilion (483 sq. ft.).
  • Day rental – Glass-enclosed dining room only, available 9 a.m.-3 p.m. with 3-hour minimum. (Note: These times are not available for wedding receptions.) Wide range of choices for food and beverage purchases including buffet-style meals and full-bar services.
  • Evening rental – The entire restaurant available 5 p.m.-midnight with 3-hour minimum, plus food & beverages. Wide range of choices including buffet-style meals and full-bar services.

The Chapel (Chapelle des Attakapas)

  • 1,050 square feet.
  • The Chapel is a reproduction influenced by two area churches circa 1760 & 1773.
  • Available for evening ceremonies such as weddings, musical performances or readings.
  • Climate controlled.
  • Sixteen wooden pews (eight on each side of the center aisle) provides seating for 112 guests
  • Early evening rental, available for a maximum of three hours, which includes time to set up and remove decorations.
  • Many special enhancements such as candle lighted walkways, horse drawn carriage and Cajun/Creole Music are available.

Other Amenities and Services

  • Free parking, conveniently located, accommodates RVs and tour buses.
  • Handicapped accessible (all buildings are equipped with ADA compliant wooden ramps).
  • Historically costumed guides available for a fee, with advance notice.
  • Sound system and sound tech available for a fee, with advance notice.
  • Wireless microphone available (no charge), with advance notice.
  • To enhance special events that are booked in the evening, the village and gift shop can be opened and staffed for 1.5 hours at a cost of $250.00, with advance notice.

Support Louisiana’s Cultural Pursuits

September 19, 2011

Watershed River History

The Bayou Vermilion, or the Vermilion River is you prefer,  is a “consequent stream” or a “tidal river”, which means that the Vermilion was formed from the bottom up.

The river began life in the Vermilion Bay. Tides and other natural actions in the bay slowly eroded away the marshes and other features of the landscape as the embryonic river crept northward. This process brought the channel that would one day become the Vermilion River as far north as Lafayette.  Much later a distributary (i.e. a waterway flowing out of another) of Bayou Teche made its way south and eventually linked up with the consequent stream forming a true north-south flowing river.

The Vermilion River today is still influenced by the tides of Vermilion Bay and Gulf of Mexico. Also during times of heavy rain events parts of the Vermilion will reverse itself and flow north (between Rotary Point and the Airport).

At one time the Red River followed what is now the Bayou Teche channel.  The Vermilion River was then, and still is today, a distributary of this Red/Teche  channel.  The sediments which gave the Red River its name most likely gave the Vermilion (which means vivid red or reddish-orange) its name as well.

The Vermilion River Gets A New Life

Eventually Bayou Teche, by way of Bayou Courtableu (pronounced katabla), became a distributary of the Atchafalaya River. After the disastrous floods of 1927 the Atchafalaya Basin Floodway System was created to relieve  pressure on the Mississippi River. The levees built to create the floodway cut off the flow of fresh water to Bayou Teche and the Vermilion River.

The lack of fresh water from the Atchafalaya, and the economic growth in the Teche–Vermilion Basins meant the Teche and the Vermilion were fast becoming stagnant, polluted waterways in desperate need of a regular flushing.  Also the growing numbers of rice farmers, who use large amounts  of water, were clamoring for more fresh water.

To solve these problems the Teche-Vermilion Freshwater Project was undertaken by the Army Corp of Engineers.  A pumping station was built on the Atchafalaya River near Krotz Springs with the capacity to pump up to 1,040 cubic feet of fresh water per second into  Bayou Courtableu and eventually into the Vermilion River. The Teche-Vermilion Freshwater Project was constructed at an estimated cost of $39.7 million.  The project began in 1976 and was completed in 1982.

The Vermilion River today has many other natural tributary bayous and coulees draining most of Lafayette Parish and parts of St. Landry and St. Martin as well.

Area Location & Identification of Corridor

The Vermilion River, some 65-70 miles in length, flows through three south-central Louisiana parishes. It is part of the Teche-Vermilion Basin.  The river originates at Bayou Fusilier, which is fed by Bayou Teche in St. Landry Parish, winds its way through Lafayette Parish, and drains into the Vermilion Bay below Vermilion Parish.

The “Bayou Vermilion Corridor” in Lafayette Parish is approximately 33.5 miles long. It is frequently referred to as the “urban corridor” of 8 miles that passes through the city of Lafayette and the “rural corridor” of the remaining 25.5 miles.

Historical Background

In its early stage of development, the only point in the city where water transportation could be secured was at the site of the Pinhook Bridge. Consequently, property owners and businesses located there. In later years, steamboats ran on the bayou. However, low water levels and submerged logs hampered their ability to travel. Between 1840 and 1850, the Police Jury appropriated $4,000 to have obstructions in the river cleared from the Pinhook Bridge to Vermilion Bay.

The city of Lafayette developed adjacent to Bayou Vermilion. The importance of the Vermilion as a means of transportation and commerce declined with the introduction of the railroad and the paving of all highways leading into Lafayette in 1936.

The Army Corps of Engineers also had a significant impact on Bayou Vermilion. Dredging, completed in 1944, gave the bayou a depth of nine feet and a bottom width of 100 feet.

* Thanks to Jim Bradshaw for compiling the information on this page.* 

© Copyright 2006 BVD. All Rights Reserved.
Lafayette Parish Bayou Vermilion District, PO Box 4736, Lafayette, LA 70502
tel.337.237.8360   fax.337.237.8360

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300 Fisher Road
Lafayette, LA 70508
Tel: 337-233-4077
CEO: David Cheramie, Ph.D.
Secretary: Kim Fournet

Vermilionville Living History Museum & Folklife Park

300 Fisher Road
Lafayette, LA 70508
Tel: 337-233-4077
Coordinator: Rachelle Dugas

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