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2015 Guide to Louisiana Fairs & Festivals: July 

JULY

2-5Essence Festival (Various locations in New Orleans; www.essence.com) The weekend features Kendrick Lamar, Mary J. Blige, Usher, Missy Elliott and others, as well as local and regional bands, empowerment workshops, seminars and more. Hours vary. Admission varies.

4Lebeau Zydeco Festival (Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, 103 Lebeau Church Road, 337-623-0303; lebeauzydecofestival.com) Enjoy family activities, famous Lebeau pork-backbone dinners and, of course, live zydeco music at this yearly festival. Gates open at noon. Admission $12, free for children under 12.

15-19Tales of the Cocktail (Various locations, 504-948-0511; www.talesofthecocktail.com) The five-day event features seminars, tastings, product launches, competitions, networking events and more. Hours vary. Admission varies.

17-18Natchitoches-NSU Folk Festival (Prather Coliseum, 220 S. Jefferson St., Natchitoches, 318-357-4332; www.louisianafolklife.nsula.edu) There are three stages for music, Cajun dance lessons, a fiddle workshop, food, demonstrations and more. The Louisiana State Fiddle Championship is Saturday. Hours 4 p.m.-10:30 p.m. Fri., 8 a.m.-10:30 p.m. Sat. Admission $5 Fri. and after 5 p.m. Sat., $8 Sat., free children 12 and under.

17-18Swamp Pop Music Festival (Lamar Dixon Expo Center, 9039 St. Landry Road, Gonzales, 225-621-1700; www.swamppopmusicfest.com) The two-day music festival features indoor stages and a full slate of swamp pop music. Proceeds benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Hours 5 p.m.-till Fri., 10:30 a.m.-till Sat. Admission TBA.

17-19Cajun Music and Food Festival (Burton Complex, 7001 Gulf Highway, Lake Charles, 337-217-2612; www.visitlakecharles.org) The annual festival is presented by the Cajun French Music Association's Lake Charles chapter and includes Cajun food and music, raffles, games and family-friendly activities. Hours vary. Admission TBA.

18-19Christmas Magic in July (Pontchartrain Center, 4545 Williams Blvd., Kenner, 985-796-5853; www.steinhauerproductions.com) The shopping event features more than 100 vendors selling jewelry, clothing, wooden items, pottery, home decor, outdoor art, gifts and original artworks. Hours 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily. Admission TBA.

24-25Marshland Festival (Lake Charles Civic Center, 900 Lakeshore Drive, Lake Charles; www.visitlakecharles.org) Local and national zydeco, Cajun and country music artists will play. Hours 6 p.m.-midnight Fri., 11 a.m.-midnight Sat. Admission, $10 Fri., $15 Sat., free for children 12 and under.

25Southwest Louisiana Attakapas Opelousas Prairie Tribe Festival (Farmers Market Pavilion, 828 Landry St., Opelousas, 337-246-0718) Opelousas' Native American heritage is celebrated with traditional dancing, drumming, storytelling and demonstrations. There's also food, arts and crafts, face-painting and a talking stick contest. Hours 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Admission free.

31-Aug. 2Satchmo Summer Festival (Old U.S. Mint, 400 Esplanade Ave., 504-522-5730; www.fqfi.org) Celebrate the life, legacy and music of Louis "Satchmo" Armstrong with two music stages, seminars, family activities, New Orleans cuisine and more. Highlights include a Sunday Jazz Mass and second line parade. Hours 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Admission $5.



MARCH | APRIL | MAY | JUNE | JULY | AUGUST
SEPTEMBER | OCTOBER | NOVEMBER | DECEMBER

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