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2015 Guide to Louisiana Fairs & Festivals: May

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1Whitney Zoo-To-Do (Audubon Zoo, 6500 Magazine St., 504-861-6160; The black-tie gala for adults is a fundraiser that features food and drinks from New Orleans restaurants, live music, a silent auction and a raffle for a luxury vehicle. Hours 7 p.m.-midnight. Admission $175.

1-3Breaux Bridge Crawfish Festival (Parc Hardy, 2090 Rees St., Breaux Bridge, 337-332-6655; The legislatively dubbed "Crawfish Capital of the World" hosts the half-century-old annual celebration to spotlight Louisiana cuisine and Cajun, zydeco and swamp pop music. There are dance contests, crawfish races, a crawfish-eating contest, crawfish etouffee cookoff, Cajun music workshops and more. Hours 4 p.m.-midnight Fri., 10 a.m.-midnight Sat., 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Sun. Admission $5 Fri. and Sun., $10 Sat., $15 three-day pass.

1-3New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival (Fair Grounds Racecourse & Slots, 1751 Gentilly Blvd., See April 24 listing for description.

1-10Contraband Days (Lake Charles Civic Center, 900 Lakeshore Drive, Lake Charles, 337-912-8602; See April 28 listing for description.

2Louisiana Dragon Boat Races (Alexandria Museum of Art, 933 Second St., Alexandria, 318-443-3458; — The races take place on the Red River in downtown Alexandria, and the celebration includes arts, food, music and educat ion activities. Hours vary. Admission varies.

2St. Francisville and Jackson Garden Stroll (Town Hall, 11936 Ferdinand St., St. Francisville, 225-635-3614; The tour provides visitors the opportunity to visit five private gardens in Louisiana's East and West Feliciana Parishes. Hours noon-5 p.m. Admission $20.

2Sunset Herb & Garden Festival (235 Marie St., Sunset; Native plants, flowers, herbs, garden art and decor and herbal products are available for sale, plus there are guest speakers and more. Hours 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Admission $5.

2-3Celebration of Herbs & Gardens (Marie Street, Sunset, 337-662-3542; — The 18th annual garden festival sells native plants and flowers, as well as fresh herbs, herbal products, yard art and food. There also are kids' activities. Hours 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Admission $5, free for children under 6.

2-23Natchez Festival of Music (717 N. Union St., Natchez, Miss., 601-446-9626; — The 25th annual festival features piano by Jonathan Levin Piano, Rossini, Puccini and Martinis, a Rodgers and Hammerstein Cabaret, blues artist Vasti Jackson, baroque music, opera, theater, a beer-tasting and blues event and more. Hours vary. Admission varies.

5Factory Fest (Louisiana Music Factory, 421 Frenchmen St., 504-586-1094; See April 23 listing for description.

8-10Bayou Cajun Fest (Larose Regional Park & Civic Center, 307 E. Fifth St., Larose, 985-693-7355; Local bands like the Aaron Foret Band and Drunk Punch Ponies kick off Larose's inaugural Bayou Cajun Fest. Other highlights include a craft market, carnival rides, a Louisiana seafood boil-off and more. Hours 5:30 p.m.-1 a.m. Fri., 11 a.m.-1 a.m. Sat., 10:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Sun. Admission free.

9Crawfish Mambo (UNO Sandbar & Cove.; UNO International Alumni Association hosts the crawfish cook-off, with all-you- can-eat crawfish for attendees and live music. Hours 11a.m. - 7 p.m. Admission $25.

10Mother's Day (Audubon Zoo, 6500 Magazine St., 504-581-4629; Live music featuring Irma Thomas has become a Mother's Day tradition for many families. The celebration also features food, craft vendors, family activities and access to the zoo. Hours 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Event included in zoo admission: $18.95 ages 13-64, $14.95 ages 65 and older, $13.95 ages 2-12, free for mothers.

15Concerts in the Courtyard (The Historic New Orleans Collection, 533 Royal St., 504-523-4662; — See March 13 listing for description.

15-17Mid-City Bayou Boogaloo (500 N. Jefferson Davis Parkway, 504-488-3865; The family-friendly event features a wide range of musicians, arts and crafts, children's activities and food demonstrations. Hours 5 p.m.-9 p.m. Fri., 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sat., 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Sun. Admission free.

15-17Plaquemines Parish Seafood Festival (225 F. Edward Hebert Blvd., Belle Chasse, 504-394-6328; The annual festival features Louisiana and Gulf seafood done lots of ways, an oyster drop raffle, helicopter rides, carnival rides, a car show, music by Rockin' Dopsie, Dash Rip Rock, Aaron Foret, Boot Hill and more. Hours 6 p.m.-11 p.m. Fri., 10:30 a.m.-11 p.m. Sat.-Sun. Admission free.

20-23New Orleans Wine and Food Experience (Various locations, 504-934-1474; The culinary event draws more than 10,000 gourmands, oenophiles and others to sample the city's food, drinks, live music and art. There are special tasting events, culinary experiences, a gala and more. Hours vary. Admission varies.

21-24Krotz Springs Sportsmen's Heritage Festival (Nall Park, 562 Front St., Krotz Springs, 337-566-3527; — The festival, held near the Atchafalaya River, celebrates the wildlife and heritage of the area with a fishing tournament, wild game cook-off, live music, food, arts and crafts and more. Hours vary. Admission free.

22-24Greek Festival (Holy Trinity Cathedral, 1200 Robert E. Lee Blvd., 504-282-0259) The celebration of New Orleans' Greek roots offers traditional cuisine, music, dancing and more. There are cooking demonstrations, canoe rides and live entertainment. Hours 5 p.m.-11. p.m. Fri., 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Sat., 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sun. Admission $5, free for children under 12.

25-31Birdfoot Festival (Various locations in New Orleans, 504-451-6578; The fourth annual chamber music festival is in residence at the Contemporary Arts Center, opening rehearsals to the general public and presenting 10 concerts and events, including a Chamber Music Mentoring Program for local high school students. Hours vary. Admission varies.

30-31New Orleans Oyster Festival (Woldenberg Riverfront Park; The annual festival features restaurants offering oyster dishes, music, an oyster-eating contest, and an oyster-shucking competition. Hours 10:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m. Free admission.



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