Frisco Fest aiming for more visitors March 15-16

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 12, 2014

By Monique Roth

LAPLACE – San Francisco Plantation will host its 11th annual Frisco Fest this Saturday and Sunday on plantation grounds.

Frisco Fest offers a little something for everyone. That’s one reason why it’s expected to draw the biggest turnout to date, between 8,000 and 10,000 people, in 2014.

San Francisco Plantation’s biggest fundraiser, the annual garden and crafts festival is set to take place on March 15 and 16. Funds generated from the event are used for San Francisco Plantation’s upkeep.

“It’s a great weekend to get out of the house and spend some quality, fun time with family and friends,” said Kim Fontenot, the plantation’s general manager. “And it’s for a great cause. We’re a non-profit, and everything goes toward preserving a historic landmark.”

For the first time ever, admission to Frisco Fest will be free this year. In the past admission was $5. A tour of the plantation house can be purchased. Gates will be open from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. each day.

“We wanted to entice even more people to come out and enjoy the festival,” said Fontenot. “We’ve opened our doors, and we want everyone to come out.”

More than 100 crafters and artist booths will be on the grounds, offering carefully created items that include woodworks, stained glass, hand-crafted jewelry and Cajun products. A car show and bike tour will be held on Saturday, while Sunday offers the return of the 1-mile fun run and 5K race.

Musician Geno Delafose and the French Rockin’ Boogie will perform on Sunday from noon until 3 p.m.

Family-friendly attractions include a petting zoo, pony rides, space walks, euro bungee and rock climbing.

Of course, as with any festival in this area, the food is one of the biggest draws. Everything from Cajun rice and etouffee to traditional springtime favorites like burgers and hotdogs are staples of the day, and it doesn’t end there. Two separate cook-off competitions are set for the weekend, with the “cracklin cookoff” set for Saturday and the “chef’s choice” event on Sunday.