Friday, October 19, 2012

Angola Prison Rodeo

Yes, it is at the Louisiana State Penitentiary....on the grounds......with the prisoners.

Yes, it is a rodeo.....bulls.....wild horses.....clowns....the whole nine.......with the prisoners.

I had first heard about the rodeo several years ago from some family members that went. The stories of the rodeo performances along with the information about the things the prisoners make and sell were very interesting and I wanted to go immediately.

The rodeo only takes place during the month of October on Sundays and then once in April. For years I kept forgetting about this interesting event until a few weeks ago. A couple I go to church with, who are from New Orleans as I am, were talking about the trip they were making to the prison. October was not upon us yet so I went online and immediately made plans to finally check this thing out.

First of all the grounds are beautiful. It is thousands of acres surrounding the prison, which they farm and raise cattle. Upon arriving at the rodeo arena it's like walking into a fair (except for the razor barbed wire on top of all the fences). There are food booths, carnival games, and the most amazing arts & crafts displays you could imagine - with FANTASTIC prices.

The arts & crafts are all handmade items made by the prisoners themselves. Each prisoner is manning his own booth and negotiating the prices with customers. The variety and craftsmanship is awesome. Leather belts & purses, paintings, jewelry, swings, cedar chests, lamps, tables, rocking chairs, furniture, toys, and more.

The rodeo begins at 2pm with several professional rodeo performances but the majority of the show is performed by the Angola Prison in mates. They put on a fantastic show. I was very impressed with the beginning of the show, as we started by honoring our military, our country, and God. the excitement built from one performance to the next. My children enjoyed the entire experience of the day and I look forward to making this an annual trip.

You still have two more Sunday in October to make this trip. Don't miss out!

For more information click this link: Angola Rodeo