There are many colorfully imaginative traditions dating back to the earliest Cajun settlers of the regions of southern Louisiana to the west and north of New Orleans. One of them is the lighting of the bonfires along the Mississippi River on Christmas Eve.
These bonfires, erected on the river levees by the keepers of this old tradition, are intended to light the way for “Papa Noël,” the Cajun Santa Claus, on his airborne journey to the area. Or, according to some sources, the bonfires may have also been a way of lighting the path to the nearest Catholic church for Midnight Mass.
At dusk, usually around 7:00 p.m., the structures are doused with flammable liquids and set ablaze, lighting the sky and the surrounding area with towering flames that would be impossible for Papa Noël and his reindeer to miss. The crowds that gather to watch these spectacular conflagrations enjoy a free show and, in some locales, free bowls of hot gumbo are served up by local residents.
Both tours originate and terminate at the Gray Line Lighthouse ticket office located at Toulouse Street and the Mississippi River, adjacent to the steamboat Natchez wharf. Wear comfortable clothes and shoes as there is a walk to the bonfires of approximately 3 blocks. Reservations are recommended 24 hours in advance.
Brookstone Park Apartments, the premier apartments in Covington, Louisiana, is inviting friends and neighbors to attend this unforgettable event!
Monday, December 24, 2018—4:00 PM
Event Venue Location:
Grey Line Lighthouse Ticket Booth
400 Toulouse Street
New Orleans, Louisiana 70130