Some months back, when I was starting to plan where we would go to start our life on the road, I was looking at a map of Louisiana and noticed a notation for “Cane River Creole National Historical Park” with the town of Natchitoches nearby. I was intrigued, found Grand Ecore RV Park, and wanted to make this a stop for sure. After the schedule was set, we needed to totally regroup to take care of some business, but this was a place I wanted to keep on the itinerary.
For our first few days out of Missouri, I just wanted to get as far south as we could as soon as possible. We soon learned which items inside the RV were likely to fall on the floor after all the mini-earthquakes that happen inside during a day on the road. We also learned to be careful opening the cupboards, because for sure everything got rearranged inside them. America’s roads are pretty bad! I was hoping the trees would be budded out by the time we got here, but spring was in progress so all was good. Daffodils were blooming and so were the Bradford pear trees.
Natchitoches is pronounced “nack-i-tish”, a fun word. It is a cute little town, French Creole in origin, which sits on the Cane River. There were little tourist shops along the main street fronting the river. The only one we donned our masks for was the city’s oldest general store, Kaffie-Frederick General Mercantile. There were things to buy and things to just look at.
Natchitoches was having a “Bloomin’ on the Bricks” festival the day we were there with lots of spring flowers set out in pots, and a university orchestra playing in the bandshell on the river. It was fun to sit and listen; spring was in the air for sure!
Two food items we had heard were good were the white chocolate bread pudding from Maglieaux’s Riverfront restaurant, and the meat pies from Lasyone’s Meat Pie restaurant. The bread pudding made for some good desserts back at the RV; big enough to share. We had the meat pies with dirty rice a couple of days after the festival. I can recommend both, but not if you are watching your calories! The only other thing that is big here is boiled crawdads, straight out of the river, but we didn’t try them.
The pictures above were taken near our RV park. The area around Grand Ecore belongs to the Corps of Engineers and they run a boat launch area into the river. The RV park is privately run but has some sort of relationship with them that we weren’t able to discern. Whatever, it was a well-run park and a very relaxing place to be.
One more note for Natchitoches – the movie Steel Magnolias was filmed here and they are very proud of that. Below is the Steel Magnolia’s house. It’s been too long since I’ve seen the movie, so the house isn’t familiar to me. I may have to check it out again. We have heard, however, that some winter scenes required the townspeople to dress warmly – and it was summertime during the filming!
Next time – Cane River Creole National Historical Park