This fall, the African Diaspora Heritage Trail Conference will be in Lafayette, offering notable speakers, cultural tours and fascinating presentations.
The conference is scheduled for Oct. 9-12, 2013, and will offer thought-provoking conversations and first-hand experiences of how to preserve, promote and protect sites that are important to the global narrative of people and culture of African descent.
Featured presentations are:
Africans in Louisiana byDr. Ibrahima Seck
The Creole Journey to the Promised Land byCharles Larroque, Dr. Ray Brassieur and Dr. Jihad Muhammad
Roots to Routes: Creating the Creole Homeland with Music and Dance byNick Spitzer from National Public Radio
Haitian Mission Project: InternationalDay for People of African Descent for Recognition, Justice and Development by Ambassador Savadogo (presentation in French and English)
Breakout sessions include:
Cultural Tourism and Entrepreneurship withMinister Percy Paris, Wayn Hamilton and Georgina Dhillon, moderator Charles Larroque
Development of Local Heritage Trails withDr. Kim Dismont Robinson of the ADHT Board of Directors
Long Road to Freedom: Civil Rights in Louisiana and Beyond withKeith Weldon Medley, Kathe Hambrick-Jackson and Melba Danzie Braud, moderator Ted Maris
The Creole French Languages and Challenges to Its Viability withFrench Creole-speaking citizens, moderator Dr. Ray Brassieur
The Role of African American Museums and Repositories: The Resurgence and Responsibility of Institutions Chronicling the Lives, Including Migration Patterns of Africans in the Diaspora withDr. Carol Adams, Masequa Myers and Gail Adams, moderator Dr. Sharon Telleen
Slaves and Sugar: Transatlantic exchange in Louisiana, the Caribbean and Africa withDr. Ibrahima Seck, Jean-Marc Masseaut and Dr. Barry Jean Ancelet, moderator Dr. Jordan Kellman
In addition, the ADHT Conference gives attendees a chance to experience the Creole culture of South Louisiana first-hand. The openingceremonies will be held at Vermilionville, a folk life museum featuring the life of the Cajuns and Creoles between 1765 and 1890. The 23-acre park on the Vermilion River features 18 structures in a living history museum setting. A Creole dinner will be served while Grammy Award-winning zydeco musician Chubby Carrier performs for the group. There will also be presentations on "The Healer's Garden" by Creole folklorist Rebecca Henry and Creole Mardi Gras traditions with Avoyelles Indians of Southwest Louisiana.
The ADHT Conference will close with one of Louisiana's biggest celebrations of the Cajun and Creole cultures of South Louisiana Festivals Acadiens et Croles. Since 1977, Festivals Acadiens et Creoles has been preserving the Cajun and Creole heritages of Louisiana through presentation of the music, food, crafts and traditions at this annual fall festival. This year, the festival is honoring the Cajun and Creole Cowboys, who have alongstanding horse culture originating in 1765. This year's festival is also dedicated to one of our most prominent cowboy musicians, Boozoo Chavis, who helped to define zydeco as it was emerging in the 1950s.