Amid the frost and flurries, nothing would stop fun seekers from enjoying a night of zydeco an Louisiana spice Saturday night.
The energy in the air was palpable as curious residents packed into Finch Fieldhouse for a Night of Louisiana.
Those present could feel the Cajun-Louisiana energy in the air when they walked in. The smells, the music and the overall atmosphere expressed nothing but fun throughout the night.
Robert Ebner, the director of University Events, said the event was inspired by a visit to New Orleans several years ago, falling in love with it.
“I think of it as a big block party,” Ebner said. “People usually only come in groups of 10 to 12.”
Partygoers let loose, dancing and smiling to the two-step Cajun beat as the night carried on.
“This event is casual,” Ebner said. “It’s meant to be a celebration of life.”
Two bands played the event. The Revelers, Saturday’s first act, was a Cajun style band that included an accordion.
The headliner, Jeffrey Broussard & The Creole Cowboys, is a Zydeco-style band, blending Cajun, Blues and R&B. The band flew in from Louisiana to give Mount Pleasant a good time.
Alisha Schimm drove from Midland just for the event. Schimm has visited New Orleans four times and affectionately refers to it as her favorite American city.
“I was actually about to catch a flight to New Orleans out of Detroit last week, but decided not to at the last minute,” Schimm said. “When I heard about this event, I knew I had to come.”
Schimm went to the event with her sister-in-law to enjoy the Cajun dancing and music.
The classic, bulb-style lights glowed above the dance floor and set the mood for some good southern fun.
Music and dance lovers weren’t the only ones in for a treat Saturday night. The event had a wide selection of Cajun food to taste and thrill the senses.
Chef David Miller and his staff served Cajun Chicken, red beans and rice, gumbo, blackened-catfish and a special Mardi Gras Coleslaw.
“I’ve got a great staff,” Miller said. “Tonight, you’ll see them dancing along to the music while they work.”
The a la carte menu featured a barbecue pork sandwich, French quarter gumbo, a shrimp cocktail and a Praline Cheesecake.
The old New Orleans phrase “laissez le bon temps rouler” is Cajun for, “let the good times roll.” As the Night of Louisiana continued throughout the evening, participants felt like they were in the bayou as they uttered the phrase.