PADDLE BAYOU LAFOURCHE 2012

Staff reports

The Barataria-Terrebonne National Estuary Program and its Foundation have teamed up

to offer residents and visitors from all over the opportunity to travel along the muddy

waters of Bayou Lafourche, April 19-22, during Paddle Bayou Lafourche 2012.

The 52-mile, four-day paddling trip down the bayou begins Thursday, April 19, in

Donaldsonville, and ends in Lockport on Sunday, April 22. Paddlers can participate

anywhere from one day to all four days of the trip. They will be treated not only to scenic

natural vistas, but also to a fascinating backyard view of the bayou from the water’s

perspective and enjoy camaraderie, food, music, and fun. Paddlers will also get a

firsthand look at the restoration work being conducted along the bayou. Registered

paddlers will receive local cuisine and entertainment every night in a campsite setting.

They will also receive a t-shirt, water and healthy snacks throughout the day, and a daily

shuttle bus. Canoe rentals are available in a limited supply. Registration is required beforehand.

During the trip, paddlers may choose to camp out at Madewood Plantation, on the

Nicholls State University campus, and at Dr. Mike and Brenda Dardar Robichaux’s home

with the United Houma Nation, Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights respectively.

BTNEP will provide a presentation, given by Program Director Kerry St. Pé, Thursday

night. King Pa-Ka-Yea Band will be performing for the paddlers on Friday night, and the

United Houma Nation will hold an exhibition Saturday night. Other entertainment will

also be provided.

Local residents can also join in the experience by supporting the paddlers from the banks

of Bayou Lafourche. Locals are invited to decorate their bayou side and provide signs of

encouragement to the bayou visitors. In the past, visitors have been greeted with local

music and cheers as the paddlers coasted down the bayou. Residents are encouraged to

make sure their bayou side is clean to help welcome the paddlers and associated media.

BTNEP started Paddle Bayou Lafourche as an innovative approach to educate residents

and visitors about the culture and ecology of Bayou Lafourche, as well as the coastal

restoration needs of the area and potential solutions.

Paddlers must register by completing the registration from at www.btnep.org. Please visit

www.btnep.org for more information and to register, or call (800) 259-0869.