Crowley, the parish seat of Acadia Parish, is known as the Rice Capital of America, with more rice mills than any other city in the United States. It is located on Interstate 10, twenty miles west of Lafayette. The population of Crowley is 14,500 people. Acadia Parish, which was carved out of Imperial St. Landry Parish in 1886, has a population of 56,500. For more information, go to the city's official web site or call 1-866-665-4642.
General Information. Whether it's for a brief visit by travelers passing through along Interstate 10 or a longer stay as part of a tour of the region, Crowley has a lot to offer. For details, contact the Crowley Chamber of Commerce; or Acadia Parish Tourist Commission.
The Blue Rose Museum. Named for the late Sol Wright's famous Blue Rose Rice, the Blue Rose Museum, a restored 1848 Acadian-style cottage, is constructed of Louisiana cypress, handmade brick, and a mixture of mud and moss. It contains period furniture and china and crystal collections. Visitors can also see a collection of antique cars, including Mercedes Benz, a LaSalle series 50, and a Panzer wagon sports car. An acqua-culture tour of Wright's rice and crawfish farm will introduce you to contemporary agricultural practices in Acadiana. Information on the museum and other attractions is available at the web site of the Crystal Rice Heritage Farm.
Rice Research Station. The LSU Cooperative Extension Service supports Louisiana's agricultural economy in many ways, including an internationally recognized focus on improving rice cultivation. For information about visiting the LSU Rice Research Station located near Crowley, call (337) 788-7531 or go to the station's web page.
Rice Theatre. The Rice Theatre, 323 North Parkerson Ave. in Crowley, now features a live "Nite at the Rice" variety show the third Saturday of the month, 6-8 p.m. Saturday evening live shows. The renovated art deco style theater was built in 1940.
Grand Opera House of the South. The first season of new shows in the Grand Opera House of the South, 505 North Parkerson Ave., began in 2009. The Grand Opera House, which opened in 1901, has been undergoing restoration costing $3.7 million. For schedules and other information, go to the official web site.
Other attractions. Visit the city's web site for information on other attractions, including the Rice Interpretive Center and J.D. Miller Recording Studio, 425 North Parkerson Ave. Both, along with City Hall, are housed in the newly renovated Crowley Motor Company Building, which dates from 1920.
Rice and other agricultural products are central to Crowley's economy. A number of rice mills and related businesses are currently in operation. Adding to the economy are oil field service companies and many farm-related industries. Industrial development acreage is available in industrial parks. In addition to the availability of the educational resources of LSUE and the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Crowley is the site of the Acadian Campus of Louisiana Technical College, located at 1933 W. Hutchinson Ave.
For more information on economic development, contact the Crowley Chamber of Commerce.
Elsewhere in Acadia Parish
For information on two other Acadia Parish cities, visit the pages for:
Iota. The town of Iota, population 1,300, is the site of the Tee-Mamou-Iota Mardi Gras Folklife Festival, held annually on Mardi Gras Day starting about 9 a.m. The Tee-Mamou Mardi Gras arrive from their rural courir about 2 p.m. wearing traditional masks and costumes, including tall hats called capuchons. The celebration includes Cajun and Zydeco music and dancing, crafts, and authentic Cajun/Creole foods. It's one of the best traditional Mardi Gras celebrations in the region. The Tee-Mamou Women's Courir is held the Saturday before Mardi Gras.
These pages were established and maintained by David Simpson, who retired from LSUE in 2009.