Gator by the Bay

Party Louisiana Style with Gator by the Bay

CJ Chenier & the Red Hot Louisiana Band

Grab your cowboy hats, and boots because San Diego’s 15th annual Gator by the Bay festival is bringing the bayou to the bay from May 5th through the 8th. These four days will be filled with over 90 musical acts consisting of blues, swing, and jazz. Oh, and did I mention the daily Mardi Gras parades inviting children and their families to participate in the culture?

In Louisiana, the word “lagniappe” suggests a little something extra, a small gift included with a purchase, or an added bonus. The amazing people behind this function honors this southern tradition and will add little goodies and extra surprises along the course of the four days. All are included in your ticket purchase. If you find yourself with some free time and a full wallet, definitely wander over to the enchanting marketplace. Here, you will find unique clothing and accessories for the modern southern belle.

Down South, food is serious business. The Creole and Cajun delicacies featured at Gator by the Bay will have you feeling as if you’re standing in the French Quarter of New Orleans. A number of traditional Louisiana foods will be featured, including red beans and rice, gator gumbo, hush puppies, deep fried catfish, and beignets. For example, you may catch a glimpse at the 10,000 lbs of crawfish brought from the gulf itself. In addition, If you want to bring the Cajun cuisine into your kitchen there will be chefs to teach you recipes, techniques, and let you in on some secrets of the South.

The music is just as colorful and spicy as the food. Below the Mason Dixon Line you’ll experience an array of musical genres that range from Tennessee and the blues to Alabama and bluegrass. Gator by the Bay will be showcasing various artists on seven different stages. Many of the performers have displayed their talents previous to the San Diego seaside festival. Grammy nominee and Southern native, CJ Chenier will be playing with the Red Hot Louisiana Band, who will be staying true to their roots,and love for the gulf by bringing along their saxophone and vibrant personas.

If you tend to kick up your boots and join in a line dance, then you don’t want to miss out on Todd Day Wait’s Pigpen. Todd and his band have been playing with their guitar cases open on the streets of New Orleans and can’t wait to bring that southern charm to San Diego’s Spanish Landing. Originating in Santa Barbara, the band Rainbow Girls are bringing along the festival vibes of Mardi Gras and Coachella to the stage. The band describes themselves as, “vocalists and California natives whose wide spectrum of genres is hard to classify, but something along the lines of funky, bluesy, soulful, psychedelic pop with roots in folk and rock n’ roll.”

If the dance floor tends to be a place of embarrassment for you, Gator by the Bay will be providing guests with dance lessons, taught by various instructors for every genre. Everyone near and far should join this amazing cultural event in “America’s Finest City.” The Bon Temps Social Club and Dance Pavilion instills one rule for everyone in company: “If you’re smiling, you’re doing it right.  If your dance partner is also smiling – everyone is having fun!” And boy will the Gator by the Bay festival be fun! Check it out May 5th through May 8th.