Centerville Trailhead Dock Unveiled

We are excited to announce that the installation of our floating dock in Centerville is now complete. We unveiled the dock during a dedication ceremony at Schwan Park on Nov. 30.

The Centerville access dock was installed via a grant from the Federal Highway Administration’s Recreational Trails Program, administered through the Louisiana Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism. According to St. Mary Parish President David Hanagriff, “The Centerville dock represents the last of five trailheads installed in St. Mary Parish, joining the Charenton, Baldwin, Franklin and Patterson trailheads. St. Mary Parish welcomes tourists and locals alike to come explore the beauty of Bayou Teche and the cultural uniqueness of the communities that lie along this famous bayou.”

Currently, there are 12 official access docks installed on Bayou Teche, and when completed, the Bayou Teche National Paddle Trail will have a total of 15 access points for paddle trips, ranging from six to 12 miles in length. Information kiosks with maps and community stories are also part of each trailhead. The Centerville kiosk was funded in part by a grant from the Atchafalaya Trace Commission, an ongoing partner in the development of the Bayou Teche National Paddle Trail.

View our full list of dock locations here.

Water/Ways Exhibit at Bayou Teche Museum

The Bayou Teche Museum, in partnership with the Smithsonian Institution and Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities, is presenting “Water/Ways,” a six-week traveling exhibit on display through Nov. 27, 2021.

With compelling text, imagery, interactives and videos, the “Water/Ways” exhibit reveals the central nature of water in our lives and takes a deep look at this essential component of life on our planet, which powers the environment’s engine, impacts climate and helps shape and sculpt the landscape.

The Bayou Teche Museum will also host, either virtually or in-person, weekly programming that will include both an adult and children’s book club, Water in Religion, a screening of the movie “Deepwater Horizon,” Water in Poetry featuring two Louisiana Poet Laureates and other local poets, as well as presentations by the Port of Delcambre and The Teche Project.

A schedule of events through November is below:

November 3: Water in Religion at 6 p.m. at the Sliman Theater

November 6: “Deepwater Horizon” showing at 4 p.m. at The Grand Theater

November 10: Book Club – Bayou Farewell by Mike Tidwell at 6 p.m. at the Sliman Theater/Zoom

November 17: Water in Poetry at 6 p.m. at the Sliman Theater

November 23: TECHE Project Presentation by David Dahlquist at 6 p.m. at the Sliman Theater

November 27: Water in Religion with Jordon Courtois; time and location TBA

The exhibit and all weekly programs presented are all free to the public.

Shake Your Trail Feather Festival will be limited to the annual Paddle Parade and a Celebration Lunch at Parc des Ponts

Due to continued concerns regarding the surge of COVID-19 cases, The TECHE Project has decided to limit this year’s annual festival to the Paddle Parade. We will have a lunch service at Parc des Ponts from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., so plan to come welcome the paddlers at noon (if you’re not paddling yourself) and partake in great food and libations. There will also be a free raffle for those who can show they are vaccinated. Gift certificates to popular restaurants and other great items will be raffled at 1 p.m.

For those who wish to take part in our two-hour fun and whacky parade from the Poche Bridge Country Club to Parc des Ponts, please register on Eventbrite. Tickets will be limited, so register early. Tickets are $10 and include the annual Festival Pin. We will have two bands (Amis du Teche and the UL Cajun Band Ensemble) accompanying the paddlers on floating, decorated barges! A pre-paddle shuttle is also available for $5 at the door. Wear feathers and dress up your mask ’cause we will give out prizes for the Best Bird Mask!

For more information about the Paddle Parade, click here.

Bayou Teche National Scenic Byway Video

Shake Your Trail Feather Festival on Hold

Due to the recent surge in COVID-19 cases, The TECHE Project has decided to put planning for the full Shake Your Trail Feather Festival on Oct. 16 on hold. We will make a decision to cancel, postpone or move forward with the event by September 24. We do, however, plan to hold the Paddle Parade from Poche Bridge to Breaux Bridge, as we believe that the paddling aspect of the event can be accomplished in a safe manner with masks and social distancing. Registration for the Paddle Parade is $10 via Eventbrite. Please check our website and social media for more updates on this event in the coming weeks.

Grammy Winner Donates Guitar to Jeanerette Museum

The TECHE Project recently installed 16 information kiosks for the Bayou Teche and Lower Atchafalaya River communities in St. Landry, St. Martin, Iberia and St. Mary parishes. The kiosk exhibit in Jeanerette City Park inspired musician Wayne “Blue” Burns to make a significant donation to the Jeanerette Museum.

Burns, a Grammy winner and acclaimed bass guitarist, will donate his bass guitar to the museum on August 11 at 11 a.m. The event is open to the public.You can also get Custom Guitar Picks to gift your loved ones as it can every musician to feel the height of joy.

“Name any instrument and he can play it, and being a Grammy winner proves it,” said Elridge Little, a drummer and childhood friend of Burns since the 1960s.

Wayne Burns was born in Jeanerette and is the son of the late Frank and Vera Burns. He has played and traveled with various bands since the age of 14, including in all 50 states, as well as countries in Africa, Asia, Europe and South America.

Burns has performed with Ernie K. Doe, The Larks, Betty Wright, Buckwheat and Hitchhikers, Lil Buck Senegal, Jude Taylor and Nathan and the Zydeco Cha-Chas. Burns’ proudest moment came in 1982 when he played bass for Clifton Chenier and the Red Hot Louisiana Band and won the Grammy for the master-piece album “I’m Here.”

Burns is married to Pearlie Senegal Burns and they have three children, Wayne Jr., Jill Burns Bruno and Umea Burns. Burns is deeply grateful for all the opportunities and experiences he has enjoyed in the music industry. He is thankful to all the people in all the cities and countries that have welcomed him and his bass guitar.

“I’m elated for the museum to receive the donation from a living legend,” said Mona Stansbury, secretary of the museum’s board. “Mr. Burns’ guitar will be displayed in the museum’s music room.”

Download Our New Bayou Teche Paddle Trail Maps

With amenities along the Bayou Teche National Water and Paddle Trail nearing completion, The TECHE Project has created new maps for those wanting to paddle the trail. Maps are available for each of the four parishes along the trail: St. Landry, St. Martin, Iberia and St. Mary. Safety information and paddling tips are located on the back of each map.

This project was funded in part by a grant from the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area. Maps are available at tourist and visitors’ centers in each parish, on our website HERE and Pack and Paddle. The maps are free and also downloadable and printable.

Join Us at Our Annual Banquet on May 22

Join us at our Annual Membership Banquet being held outdoors at the beautiful Longfellow-Evangeline State Historic Site in St. Martinville. Registration will be from 11:30 a.m.-noon and the banquet from noon-3 p.m.

Justin Lemoine with the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area will speak about “Capitalizing on our Water Culture” during our lunch service, and Amis du Teche will be playing on the porch during the social. We will have food from Preservation in New Iberia and beer from Bayou Teche Brewing, along with a silent auction.

All members are invited to come for FREE. Not a member? You can join that day, with membership levels starting at just $20!

Support us for SOLA Giving Day!

Do you want to see Bayou Teche become a cleaner and healthier waterway? Sure, the bayou is great for paddling and boating, but what about swimming and fishing? If The TECHE Project had its way, we would have Bayou Teche removed from the state’s “impaired waterways” list and cleared for all activities. We need your help to make that happen, though!

We are participating in the Community Foundation’s SOLA Giving Day for the first time this year. Any amount you can contribute now through May 6 will go toward our efforts to CLEAN UP BAYOU TECHE.

Early giving is happening now, and the BIG DAY is May 6. Please take a moment to donate to our efforts—large or small—and make your mark on Bayou Teche.