SW Louisiana hoping to host World Acadian Congress in 2014
By J. Anfenson-Comeau
ARNAUDVILLE – Hopes are high that Acadiana may host the fifth Congrés Mondial Acadien in 2014, but more support is needed for the bidding process, CMA Louisiane 2014 consultant Rachelle Dugas announced at the St. Landry Parish Tourism Industry Partners meeting Monday.
The CMA, or World Acadian Congress, in a twice-a-decade event that brings together the largest gathering of Acadian descendants in the world, with participants from eastern Canada, Louisiana, the Northeast, France and elsewhere.
The next CMA is being held in the Acadian Peninsula, in northeast New Brunswick August 7 to 23, 2009.
The event hosts family reunions, cultural expos, concerts and other events focused on sharing and preserving Acadian culture and history.
“Cajuns and Acadians have weathered more than their share of hardship and amazingly, it didn’t become a blueprint for bitterness. Instead, close to a million Acadians and Cajuns worldwide share great qualities such as openness, joie de vivre, strength and innovative spirit. The Congrès is their opportunity to get together, restore and foster the bonds that survive,” Dugas said.
The web site for the event can be found at www.cma2009.ca.
Southwest Louisiana hosted the second CMA in 1999, giving Cajuns the opportunity to celebrate their common past with other Acadian descendants.
The host location of the fifth CMA will be announced at the 2009 CMA.
Dugas, a native of Nova Scotia, is in charge of building the southwest Louisiana bid and convincing the Société Nationale de l’Acadie’s Selection Committee that the CMA 2014 should be held here.
“We really feel that it’s important for this event to come back to Louisiana,” Dugas said, pointing out that hosting the CMA would help encourage greater Acadian tourism.
Dugas said she is looking to collect letters of support from organizations, individuals, communities and businesses.
Dugas said that the end of the year is her deadline for gathering letters of support.
If named the 2014 CMA host, the event would be held throughout the 22 southwestern Louisiana parishes of Acadiana.
Dugas can provide a sample letter of support to anyone interested in helping to promote southwestern Louisiana’s bid.
She can be reached at (337) 291-5474 or firstname.lastname@example.org.