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Local Guide

Things To Do in Baton Rouge

Alex Box Stadium. Built in 1937 and named for Alex Box, an LSU athlete and graduate, the 7,000-seat stadium is one of the finest complexes in college baseball. Among improvements are new dugouts, locker rooms, a sound system, and a scoreboard complete with graphics capabilities. Alex Box Stadium is the home of the LSU Tiger baseball team - 1991, 1993, 1996, 1997 and 2000 national champions.

Audubon State Historic Site & Oakley House. The 100-acre woodland site features Oakley House, where John James Audubon lived, formal and kitchen gardens, a separate kitchen and weaving room, a plantation barn, two slave cabins, a picnic area with a shelter and a nature trail through acres of magnolia and poplar trees. Special living and history events, programs and demonstrations take place throughout the year. For information, call 225-635-3739.

Belle of Baton Rouge. Play at the Belle of Baton Rouge Casino, where good times, fun, food and hospitality await you. The finest riverboat ever to cruise the Mississippi River , the three-deck riverboat casino - Belle of Baton Rouge - features over 29,000 square feet of gaming area, including over 800 slots, video poker, keno machines and table games, live entertainment, and dining. Located on the Mississippi River in the downtown historic district, Argosy Casino offers free admission, free parking and free valet service, as well as complimentary cocktails. Food is available on board and in the casino's extensive landside facilities, including a seafood restaurant, an oyster bar, and a casino buffet. For more information, call 225-378-6000 or visit

Baton Rouge Ballet Theater. Featuring a Junior and Senior company, the Baton Rouge Ballet Theatre features the finest productions and dancers in the region. There is also the Baton Rouge Ballet Theatre Choreography Project, which encourages young dance makers and gives them the opportunity to showcase their work, as well as the program Ballet for Children. Don't miss the Christmas performance, The Nutcracker, a Tale from the Bayou. For information, call 225-766-8379 or visit

Baton Rouge Blues Week. Entering its 11th year, Baton Rouge Blues Week features many exciting musical performances at clubs, schools and restaurants around Baton Rouge . The annual blues celebration, held April 24-May 1, 2005, presents a wide array of exceptional music, including traditional blues, Creole, Zydeco, Jazz and a diversity of styles and artists. The week-long jam includes, Blues in the Schools, a Blues Photography and Art Exhibit, the Blues Week kickoff jam session at Swamp Mama's, The Slim Harpo Awards/Hohner Jam Session, The Worlds Greatest All Star Jam Session and feature concerts at participating venues throughout the week. Taste the special Blues Dishes on Baton Rouge restaurant menus. For more information, visit

Baton Rouge River Center (formerly Centroplex). Nestled in the heart of revitalized downtown Baton Rouge, The Baton Rouge River Center is a multipurpose facility dedicated to bringing premier events and entertainment to the city. Location on the banks of the mighty Mississippi River , The Baton Rouge River Center is comprised of three main facilities - the Arena, the Exhibition Hall and the Theater for Performing Arts. With this diverse offering, the River Center can host any event, concert, convention, sporting event, trade show and theater production. As the downtown area continues to grow, The Baton Rouge River Center has responded with the current expansion of the new Convention Center. A cornerstone development in Baton Rouge , this venue will include 100,000 square feet of continuous, state-of-the-art exhibition space. For information, visit

Baton Rouge Convention Center. Located on the banks of the Mississippi River , the new Baton Rouge River Center Exhibition Hall incorporates state-of-the-art exhibition, meeting, concession and kitchen/catering facilities. The Exhibition Hall offers 70,000+ square feet of contiguous exhibit space for a variety of events including, exhibits, trade shows, consumer shows, banquets, receptions, conventions, general sessions and meetings. The Convention Center design incorporates regional architectural elements, such as exterior shutters, deep sunlight filtering exterior spaces and double height porticos. The grand main lobby as well as the exterior second-floor veranda showcases views of the Mississippi River . For more information, visit

Baton Rouge River Center Arena. The Baton Rouge River Center Arena plays host to a variety of concerts, trade shows, sporting events and family shows. Kid Rock, Cher and Tim McGraw are just a few of the acts to recently play the Arena. Set-ups for the Arena can range from up to 12,000 for concerts to 8500 for sporting events to an intimate theatrical setting of 4500. The River Center also offers three meeting areas that can be configured into eight separate rooms, totaling 8000 square feet.

Baton Rouge Symphony. Known throughout the country for its excellent musical tradition, the Baton Rouge Symphony is Louisiana 's oldest, continuously performing orchestra. Over its 55-year history, the Symphony has performed an estimated 500 concerts for the people of Louisiana . Tickets range from $10-$25. Box office hours: Mon.-Thu., 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; Fri., 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. For specific concert dates and information, call 225-383-0500 or visit

Blue Bayou Waterpark. Located on I-10 in Baton Rouge , Blue Bayou Waterpark features thrilling water rides, slides, attractions and pools for the entire family. The Waterpark's newest attraction, Conja', is the largest in-line water slide in the world - 95' tall (10 stories) - and has 1500 feet of 7-foot wide flume. The Mad Moccasin is the most intense ride with the coiled twin snakes offering an exciting and thrilling body slide ride. Pirate's Cove is the ultimate interactive water adventure with giant water cannons blasting and ropes to climb. For more information, visit

Bluebonnet Swamp Nature Center. A unique natural area in Baton Rouge , Bluebonnet Swamp Nature Center is a 101-acre facility dedicated to conservation, education, recreation and tourism. Begin your tour at the 9,500-square foot Nature Center Building , an impressive glass and wood structure that presents several exhibits. Venture into the pristine 65-acre cypress-tupelo swamp. Self guided nature trails wind through a magnolia-beech upland hardwood forest with dramatic ravines. The two ecosystems are linked by trails, and elevated boardwalks provide complete accessibility and the opportunity for exploration and magnificent views. The nature center includes educational exhibits, a picnic area, and restrooms. Tuesday - Saturday, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Sundays, 12 p.m. - 5 p.m. For more information, call 225-757-8905.

Bon Carre'. Bon Carre' is a renovated mall development in the center of Baton Rouge that has been transformed into a technology center. It contains a new tier-one data center, a public/private business incubator known as the Louisiana Technology Park , and several technology companies. Bon Carre', formerly Bon Marche ' Mall, is quickly becoming the information technology hub of Baton Rouge .

Hollywood Casino. The Hollywood Casino features more than 1,085 slots and 31 table games over three spacious decks. Also, you can experience one of the finest steakhouses in Baton Rouge . The Capitol Bistro serves aged Angus beef and the freshest Louisiana seafood cooked to perfection. Featuring four restaurants, live music in the nightclub and free valet parking, you can bet on the Hollywood Casino. For more information, call 225-709-7777 or visit

Celebration Station. Celebration Station is a fun, family entertainment center with 54-hole adventure golf, two go-kart tracks, nine batting cages, Daniel's Dixie Playland (5 rides) for ages 2-12, and over 70 Midway video games. The Station offers food services and picnic areas. For more information, call 225-924-7888.

Dixie Landin' Amusement Park. Located on 80 in Baton Rouge , next to Blue Bayou Water Park , Dixie Landin' Amusement Park features 24 rides, 10 games and many exciting rides for kids and the entire family. Attractions include the "Ragin Cajun," a giant steel looping roller coaster that drops from 14 stories up, and "Splinter," a log flume ride with 26 and 50-foot drops. At 90 feet tall, the "Giant Wheel" offers a bird's eye view of the entire park. Dixie also has retail shops and a variety of eateries. For more information, call 225-753-3333 or visit

Greater Baton Rouge Zoo. Located 15 minutes from downtown Baton Rouge , the beautifully landscaped Baton Rouge Zoo features more than 1,800 animals from around the globe. You'll see alligators, elephants, giraffes, flamingos and white tigers up close. The newest exhibit, The Otter Pond, features a replicated fishing cabin with underwater viewing of otters, and L'aquarium de Louisiane features the fish, reptiles and amphibians of Louisiana . See rare and colorful birds from the tropics at Parrot Paradise . Youngsters love the KidsZoo , complete with a playground and encounters with farm animals. Don't miss a live animal show featuring the Zoo's Asian elephants. Take a scenic ride on the Cypress Bayou Railroad or a narrated tour of the Zoo on the sidewalk White Tiger Tram . Food concessions are available at the Flamingo Cafe and souvenirs and gifts can be found at the Safari Post . For more information, call 225-775-3877 or visit

Louisiana Arts & Science Museum. The Louisiana Art & Science Museum features many art exhibitions, interactive art and science exhibits, an Egyptian gallery, a Challenger Learning Center and a gift shop. The Ancient Egypt gallery features an ancient tomb with an adult female mummy dating back to 300 B.C. The Museum building is a renovated 1920's train depot with a five-car train on-site. In addition to rotating permanent exhibits, you'll see traveling exhibitions, workshops and events. Be inspired by the wonders of the solar system and the universe beyond at the Museum's Irene W. Pennington Planetarium , a giant 60-foot dome multi-media theater that presents planetarium programs, large-format films and high-resolution video projections in the ExxonMobil Space Theater . The ExxonMobil Theater dazzles with 15,000 stars, and features Baton Rouge 's only 70mm, 8-perf projection system. Presentations feature thrilling, larger-than-life films convincing you that you're really aboard a Space Shuttle lift-off, navigating outer space or discovering the wonders of the West. The planetarium also features 5,000 square feet of out-of-this-world exhibits. Weigh yourself on the moon, meet Galileo or touch a billion-year old meteorite. For more information, call 225-344-5272 or visit

Louisiana Governor's Mansion. The Louisiana Governor's Mansion was built in 1963 in modified Greek Revival style as a replica of one of the state's plantation mansions when Jimmy Davis was Governor of Louisiana. The Mansion is located on Capitol Lake near the State Capitol. Because so many antebellum mansions were being destroyed by fire and neglect, Gov. and Mrs. Davis instructed the architects to design a mansion in the Greek revival style, which was the dominant style in Louisiana after 1830 and a distinct departure from earlier Louisiana architecture. The Mansion contains 25,000 square feet of space in three floors and a basement. Tours by appointment only. For information, call 225-342-5855.

Louisiana New State Capitol. What began as the dream of Governor Huey P. Long is a symbol of the pride, history and spirit of Louisiana . Completed in 1932, the building stands on a 27-acre tract. The tallest capitol in the US , the building is 450 feet high with 34 floors above pleasant gardens. There is tremendous symbolism throughout the design of the building, including the Hall and the Senate and House Chambers. The building is built in Art Deco style with magnificent marble and bronze detailing inside. The Observation Deck on the 27th floor overlooks Baton Rouge and the Mississippi River at a height of 350 feet. The views of the gardens are spectacular. Broad steps of Minnesota granite commemorating the 50 states lead to its entrance. In 1935, the building that Long built was also the site of his assassination. Senator Long is buried on the grounds and his statue faces the Capitol. The Pentagon Barracks (c.1819) and the Old Arsenal Powder Museum (c.1835) are also part of the complex. For information, call 225-342-7317.

Louisiana Old State Capitol. High on a bluff overlooking the Mississippi River stands the majestic Old State Capitol, a Gothic architectural treasure designed and built by James Harrison Dakin in 1850. The 154-year old castle-on-the-river is the recipient of distinguished awards for architecture and exhibit design. Climb the cast iron staircase and view a stained-glass cathedral dome in this unique blend of Gothic and Victorian architecture. Don't miss Huey Long Live! The Kingfish Speaks, and marvel at this one of a kind animatronics exhibit. Ask about their ghost, Pierre, and visit the unique museum store. Museum Hours: Monday - special tours only; Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. ; Sunday, 12 p.m. - 4 p.m. For more information, call 225-342-0500 or visit

Louisiana State University Museum of Art. Located in the LSU Memorial Tower , the Louisiana State University Museum of Art contains original 17th through mid-19th-century period rooms from England and America , as well as galleries for temporary exhibitions. The Museum of Art features collections of lithographer Caroline Durieux, Newcomb crafts, New Orleans-made silver, Anglo-Irish silver, collections of prints and original works of art, 19th-century lighting devices, and oil and watercolor paintings and drawings depicting early Louisiana and Baton Rouge scenes. Hours: 11 a.m.-2 p.m., weekdays. Free Admission. For more information, call 225-578-4003.

Louisiana State University Museum of Natural Science. The LSU Museum of Natural Science , located in Foster Hall, includes nine major dioramas depicting the flora and fauna of North America and examples of Louisiana 's diverse animal life. The Museum is divided into two main parts - the public exhibits containing both habitat and biological exhibits, along with identification panels, and the research collections used by scientists from all over the world. Hours: 8 a.m.-4 p.m. weekdays; open one Saturday a month for Special Saturday Program. For more details, call 225-578-3080.

Louisiana State University. Since 1860, Louisiana State University has served Louisiana , the nation and the world through multipurpose programs encompassing instruction, research and public service. The LSU community consists of more than 34,000 faculty, staff, and students from every state and more than 120 countries. As the flagship institution of the state, LSU is a leading doctoral/research - extensive university, challenging undergraduate and graduate students to achieve the highest levels of intellectual and personal development. LSU offers a broad array of undergraduate degree programs and extensive graduate research opportunities, and employs faculty who are excellent teacher-scholars. Located on 2,000 acres in southern Baton Rouge , LSU's more than 250 buildings are grouped on a 650-acre plateau, and 46 buildings are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. LSU is the home of The Southern Review , one of the world's most prestigious literary journals, established in the 1930s. LSU also offers a successful athletics program for men and women. LSU's beloved Fighting Tigers football team, spirited by Bengal tiger mascot Mike V, plays at Tiger Stadium. For information, schedules and admissions, visit

LSU's Hilltop Arboretum. LSU's Hilltop Arboretum is an extensive collection of Louisiana trees and shrubs cultivated on 14 beautiful acres. Wander across 20-foot ravines on the old footbridge in the tranquil Cathedral where tree canopies form a green protective room. Hilltop remains a model of the natural landscape and continues its traditional use as an outdoor laboratory for LSU students. Part of the School of Landscape Architecture , Hilltop features a self-guided nature tour highlighting native flowering shrubs and trees of Louisiana . The arboretum is open during daylight hours. For information, call 225-767-6916.

LSU Mounds. The LSU mounds stand on the northwest corner of campus. The two mounds, created by Native Americans, functioned as territorial markers or symbols of group identity. In 1982, radiocarbon dating determined that they were built about 5,000 years ago. In 1999, the mounds, which are among the oldest preserved Indian mounds in the Western Hemisphere , were placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

LSU Tiger Cage. Just to the north of Tiger Stadium is the home of Mike V, LSU's Bengal tiger mascot. The cage, constructed for the first Mike in 1937, was renovated in 1981 to include a grassy area, a tiger-sized wooden scratching post, a pool, a climbing platform, and an indoor area for use in inclement weather. For more information, call 225-578-0628.

Magnolia Mounds Plantation. Visit this 1790's plantation house, with a reproduction 1800's open-hearth kitchen, 1800's slave cabin, overseer's house and pigeonnier, herb and vegetable garden, and a cash crop garden. Surrounded by 100-year-old live oaks, the 1791 house has retained its Creole plan and character for over 200 years. Its construction is of cypress beams with the original cypress flooring throughout the house. For information, call 225-343-4955.

Mardi Gras Baton Rouge. Mardi Gras is music, parades, picnics, floats, costumes, food, catching beads, festive balls - - one big holiday in Baton Rouge. French for Fat Tuesday, Mardi Gras is celebrated on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent. The exciting Downtown Baton Rouge celebration is alive with exciting parades, Cajun, blues, jazz, Zydeco and marching music, floats, and krewes. Everyone is wearing purple, green, and gold, and adorned with long beads caught from the masked krewes on the colorful floats. The streets buzz with live music and throngs of joyous party-goers dressed in crazy costumes and walking, dancing and laughing in the spirit of Bacchus. Join us for all the fun at the family-oriented Spanish Town Mardi Gras Parade.

New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. Jazz, gospel, Cajun, Zydeco, rhythm and blues music fills New Orleans during the last week of April and the first week of May for the annual New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival - a major international musical and cultural event. The festival - at the New Orleans Fairgrounds horseracing track - includes performances by hundreds of top musicians and an enormous display of South Louisiana and New Orleans crafts and Creole, Cajun and crescent city cuisine. Jazz Fest has always blended a wide mix of internationally renowned guests, such as, Aretha Franklin, Miles Davis, Bob Dylan, Ella Fitzgerald, Dizzy Gillespie, Santana, Sarah Vaughan, Paul Simon, Jimmy Buffett, Max Roach, B.B. King, Dave Matthews Band, Patti LaBelle, and many others. The 2004 event marked the 35th anniversary of Jazz Fest, which Life magazine called "the country's very best music festival." Inspired by the spirit of Mahalia Jackson and the Eureka Brass Band back in 1970, Jazz Fest celebrates the culture of Louisiana with the combined fervor of a gospel hymn and the joy of a jazz parade. The 36th annual Jazz fest will take place April 22- May 1. For information, visit

Nottoway Plantation. At the edge of sugar cane fields, Nottoway Plantation overlooks the Mississippi River . This enormous mansion, completed in 1859, reflects an unusual combination of Greek revival architectural and innovations of the original owner. Not only is the floor plan irregular, but the house contained many elements that were innovative and rare in the mid-19th century, such as indoor plumbing and hot and cold running water. Take a guided tour, have dinner, or get married in this magnificent plantation. For more information, visit

Oak Alley Plantation. Located on the Mississippi River between New Orleans and Baton Rouge , Oak Alley Plantation is the "Grande Dame of the Great River Road ." The quarter-mile canopy of giant live oak trees, nearly 300 years old, forms an impressive avenue leading to the classic Greek-revival style antebellum home. Built in 1839 by a wealthy French Creole sugar planter from New Orleans , Oak Alley Plantation offers daily guided tours, a Cajun/Creole restaurant, a café/ice cream parlor, and a gift shop. A spectacular setting for weddings, parties and private affairs! For information, visit

Parker Coliseum. The John M. Parker Coliseum, built in the 1930's, hosts livestock shows, horse shows and other activities. The 250-foot, 125-foot wide arena is surrounded by an amphitheatre that seats 6,756. Adjoining the east end of the coliseum is a stock exhibit building, which houses livestock in its 300 stalls. Parker Coliseum is an integral part of the entire LSU community and is used throughout the year for hundreds of scheduled events and educational activities.

Pete Goldsby Field. Pete Goldsby Field is Baton Rouge 's oldest professional baseball venue and home field of the Baton Rouge River Bats Professional Baseball Organization of the Southeastern League of Professional Baseball. The Field hosts the three teams of South Louisiana Baseball League, which is growing as a top off-season college league. Goldsby Field is in the midst of an extensive, five-year renovation to re-establish Baton Rouge as a prominent, professional baseball city. The field is used year-round for professional, college and amateur league games, summer baseball camps, training sessions, and tournaments.

Pete Maravich Assembly Center. Located on Louisiana State University 's Baton Rouge campus, the Pete Maravich Assembly Center is a popular multi-purpose facility, with an Arena, Auxiliary Gymnasium and L-Room. Opened in 1971, the 14,936-seat arena was designed for the presentation of theatrical performances, concerts, variety shows, lectures, conferences, academic events, and athletic events. The Center houses LSU Varsity Sports, and two Athletic Training Rooms. The arena floor also offers 25,200 square feet of exhibit space. The scoreboard, one of the biggest in the country, is equipped with the latest technology innovations, such as a 9x11' replay screen on each of its four sides, with both video and graphic capabilities, a running total of the player's points and fouls, and rotating ad panels. Ticket Office: 225-578-2184.

Plaquemine Lock. See the lock structure and house that was built in 1909 in downtown Plaquemine. The Museum provides the history of the locks and an antique boat pavilion. For more information, call 225-687-7158.

Rural Life Museum & Windrush Gardens. Located on the 450-acre Burden Research Plantation about five miles from the LSU campus, the LSU Rural Life Museum and Windrush Gardens is a 20-building complex that depicts a typical 19th-century working plantation. Rural Life provides insight into the largely forgotten lifestyles and cultures of pre-industrial Louisiana . Hours are 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m., weekdays. An admission fee is charged. For more information, call 225-765-2437 or visit

Shaw Center for the Arts Theatre. The Shaw Center for the Arts will house performing arts, the LSU Museum of Art, restaurants and a coffee shop with a spectacular view of the Mississippi River . Shaw will open March 2005. For information, call 225-387-6126.

Southern University. Southern University and A&M College is a publicly supported, coeducational, comprehensive institution offering four-year undergraduate, graduate, professional, and doctoral degree programs. Originating in New Orleans in 1880, Southern University is part of the only historically black university system in the country. The main campus in Batonm Rouge has an average student enrollment of 9,000 each year. The University is committed to a broad program of research and creative work to stimulate the faculty and students in a quest for knowledge and to aid society in resolving its scientific, technological, socioeconomic, and cultural problems. The University offers programs of study ranging from associate degrees to doctoral and professional degrees. The Southern Jaguars football team is the 2003 SWAC and Black College National champions. For information and admissions, visit

Southern University Museum of Art. Located in Martin L. Harvey Hall, overlooking the bluffs, the Southern University Museum features important works by African American artists from the past and present and provides an opportunity to learn about other aspects of culture. For information, call 225-771-4513.

State Capital Dragway. Check out exciting NHRA drag racing on this ¼ mile track right in Baton Rouge . Join the fun at the Always Coca Cola Fun Series every Friday Night. Admission is only $10.00 to race or watch. For more information, visit

St. Joseph 's Cathedral. Built in 1853, the cathedral's interior has been renovated in a style, which is modern, inspirational and magnificent. Its exterior remains unchanged. For more information, call 225-387-5928.

Super Dome. The New Orleans Super Dome is the world's largest steel-constructed dome arena unobstructed by poles. The Super Dome presents a variety of sporting events, special events, theme parties, receptions and seated dinners, concerts and performances, conventions, trade shows and exhibits, and family shows. The Super Dome is home of the New Orleans Saints football team, the Nokia Sugar Bowl Football Classic, and many prestigious sporting events and tournaments. The Dome has hosted more Super Bowls than any facility in the nation, and holds the world record for attendance at an indoor concert - 87,500 people for the Rolling Stones in 1981. For more information, visit

Theater of Performing Arts. Entering the Theatre for the Performing Arts, the visitor transforms into the glory of old vaudeville. Featuring continental seating for up to 1,900 patrons, every seat has a terrific view of the stage, guaranteed by the proscenium opening of fifty-seven feet by twenty-eight feet. The seating plan includes floor seating for almost 1,200 and balcony seating just over 700. The state-of-the-art Theatre offers forty-eight line sets (counterweight), a 16-channel in-house sound system, and in-house lighting to present a wide variety of programming, meeting presentations and keynote addresses for conventions.

Tiger Stadium. The LSU Tigers have drawn more than 15 million fans since 1957 to LSU Tiger Stadium. Better known in Baton Rouge as " Death Valley ," it's the most dreaded college home field in the country. The East stadium was built in 1926, the west in 1932, north in 1937, south in 1957, and more additions were completed in 1978 and 2000. With a seating capacity of 91,644, Tiger Stadium is the 4th largest on-campus stadium in the country. For information and/or tickets, call 225-578-0628.

USS Kidd Veterans Memorial & Museum. The USS Kidd Louisiana Veterans Memorial & Museum, located in downtown Baton Rouge , honors the men/women of America 's armed forces. Restored to its 1945 appearance, the Fletcher-class destroyer USS KIDD has over 50 inner spaces to experience. Walk the decks of the "Pirate of the Pacific," and learn about the sacrifices our veterans made for freedom. See the aircraft that soared through the skies of Southeast Asia during two eras of conflict. Touch the memory of the fallen Americans whose names are carved into the black granite walls of Louisiana Memorial Plaza . The Veterans Museum displays a P-40 aircraft, 40 ship models, a full-scale replica of the gun deck of Old Ironsides, the Louisiana Memorial Wall with an eternal flame, and a Corsair A-7E jet as a memorial to Vietnam Veterans. For information, call 225-342-1942 or visit [Top]

2445 S. Acadian Thruway, Baton Rouge, LA 70808



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