Blackpot Festival & Cookoff

October 25 - 26, 2019
Vermilionville

The South Louisiana Black Pot Festival & Cookoff is one of the most unique festivals in Louisiana. Held annually in late October, the festival celebrates Cajun culture and cooking with two days of great music, dancing, food, camping & jamming. The festival is a cooperative of South Louisiana musicians, artists and southern culture enthusiasts, creating an unprecedented gathering of south Louisiana’s hottest roots bands, as well as a number of groups from all over the country.

Live performances range from Cajun & Zydeco, to Creole, Swing, Hot Jazz, Blues, Bluegrass, Americana, Irish & Old-Time. Plus, an old-fashioned black pot cook-off, accordion contest, called square dancing, and ample camping space for tents & RV’s.

Blackpot Festival

2019 Artists

Preston Frank | Los Texmaniacs | Little Freddie King | Sheryl Cormier | Ed Poullard | Yvette Landry | The Revelers | Jesse Lege | Pine Leaf Boys | Daquiri Queens | Warren Storm | Djoukil | Five Mile Mountain Road | Tucci Trio | Hogslop String Band | Sonny Landreth | Big Cedar Fever | Eric Adcock | Bad Penny Pleasuremakers | Johnny Nicholas | Dirk Powell | Hoot and Holler | Grant Dermody | Jenny Parrot | Pat Reedy & The Longtime Goners | Gerald Gruenig & Gentilly Zydeco | Bluebird String Band | McKain Lakey | Choupique Cajun Band | John Miller | Get Up Rounder | Krista Shows & Scott Sharpe | Charlie Rose | Duck Buford

Come out for the Blackpot Festival & Cookoff Oct. 25-26

The last weekend in October, locals, and visitors can step back in time to experience what life was like on the bayou centuries ago. One of Louisiana’s most unique events, the Blackpot Festival & Cookoff celebrates the area’s rich history and culture through food and music. The festival is held at Vermilionville, the perfect outdoor kitchen for old-fashioned blackpot cooking. The 23-acre heritage park rests along the Bayou Vermilion and includes 19 attractions, including seven restored original homes, a schoolhouse, chapel, and performance center as well as costumed artisans who provide historical demonstrations.

Blackpot Festival & Cookoff
Image courtesy of Jo Vidrine

Glenn Fields, a local musician, runs the Blackpot Festival & Cookoff every year through his organization Louisiana Folk Roots to foster the state’s vibrant and venerable living traditions.
 
“Our mission is to preserve and present the music, food, dance, language, and art of Acadiana,” Fields says. “The blackpot, or as some call a Dutch oven, was used in households for everything from cooking to doing laundry. Many Acadians still use a blackpot today, and it’s a great way to serve a lot of people.”

Blackpot Festival & Cookoff
Image courtesy of Jo Vidrine
 
Blackpot cooking was an essential way communities shared food, explains Fields. When a farmer slaughtered a hog, he’d divide up each part of the pig for people to make a particular dish in what was called a boucherie. South Louisiana has carried on this communal tradition, where you’ll find big pots of jambalaya or gumbo simmering wherever there’s a large gathering of people, whether a party, football tailgate or hunting camp.

Boucherie Cracklin
Image courtesy of Jo Vidrine
 
During the weekend, dozens of teams will compete in the annual blackpot cook-off in categories including best gravy or sauce, gumbo, cracklin,’ jambalaya and dessert. Festival-goers will have the chance to sample culinary delights from dozens of blackpots as well as purchase beer from local brewers. In addition, some of the state’s best musicians will perform on four stages throughout the park.

Blackpot Festival & Cookoff
Image courtesy of Jo Vidrine
 
Highlights this year include performances by the Daiquiri Queens, Preston Frank, Los Texmaniacs, Yvette Landry, Little Freddie King, Sheryl Cormier, and Pine Leaf Boys. Other stages will be dedicated to singer-songwriters and workshops. For a full schedule click here.
 
The festival also includes an accordion contest, square dancing, and a campout next door to Vermilionville in the nearby baseball park.

Blackpot Festival & Cookoff
 Image courtesy of Jo Vidrine

“Hundreds of folks camp overnight, cook over an open fire and play music together,” says Fields. “It’s really lively and a lot of fun.”
 
A weekend pass is $60 including food samples and music at the event as well as the campout Friday and Saturday. Vermilionville Historic Village is located at 300 Fisher Road. For tickets click here.

Cook-Off

The Cookoff takes place Saturday afternoon.  Visit each chef's outdoor kitchen and sample their creations! Anyone can enter from Amateur to Professional for a chance at cash prizes and bragging rights. Categories include Gravy, Gumbo, Cracklins, Jambalaya, Dessert…​

Gravy (“Sauce”, Grease gravy… “that good stuff they make on thursdays at the plate lunch place”)!
Gumbo ( gumbo is gumbo and not a gravy you should know what this is)!
Cracklin (“Gratons”)!
Jambalaya!
Dessert (pie, cobbler, cinnamon rolls, sweet sweet goodness etc.)(cooked in cast iron)!

Cook-Off Rules

1. Main Dish cooked in Cast Iron vessel – No open fires (gas, coals OK)

2. 10’X10′ canopy allowed per entry

3. All contestants must have fire extinguisher on site.

4. Participants are encouraged, but NOT REQUIRED to prepare enough food to allow festival goers to taste, within reason. (we do not provide bowls and utensils for tasting) *don’t prepare more than you are comfortable with for your recipe’s best taste; there is no minimum amount required for tasting

5. Tasting is on a first come first serve basis and participant may stop providing samples at their discretion in order to have enough food for judges tasting.

6. Cooking time will be from 12 Noon until 5pm on Saturday.

7. Dishes MUST be ready for pick up in by 5pm.

8. Winners announced 6pm (subject to change) between Saturday evening’s main stage performances

Cook-Off Prizes

1st place in each category – $150 and plaque

2nd place in each category – $75 and plaque

3rd place in each category – $50

Upcoming Festival Dates

October 30-31, 2020
October 29-30, 2021
October 28-29, 2022
October 27-28, 2023
October 25-26, 2024

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