Win a Deep South USA Christmas Hamper
Christmas is nearly here and we have a fantastic Deep South USA Christmas Hamper full of delicious treats* for one lucky winner!
The Deep South states of Alabama, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee are like nowhere else in America with the sheer variety from the beaches of the Gulf Coast to the Appalachian mountains that will surprise and enthral both seasoned and first-time visitors to America.
All you have to do is enter your details below to be in the prize draw and a chance to win our Deep South USA Hamper FULL of goodies, including Evan Williams Bourbon, Jack Daniels Whiskey, Goo Goo Clusters, New Orleans Cook Book, The Love Light Orchestra on vinyl recorded live in Memphis, Mississippi cheese straws, barbecue and cajun seasoning....just to name a few! Closing date is 23:59pm on 17th December with the winner announced the following day. We'll also include a Deep South USA travel guide so you can plan next years holiday while eating & drinking your Southern treats!
You've got to be in it to win it!
*please note the hamper includes alcohol so you must be over 18 to enter and some food products contain nuts.
Those Pretty Wrongs Competition
Those Pretty Wrongs are Jody Stephens and Luther Russell - a musical partnership borne of a deep and lasting friendship that dates back to the early ’90s. As the story goes, no music was made between them until about five years ago, when they were united in the cause of a documentary about Jody’s legendary Memphis group Big Star. After releasing their self-titled debut on Ardent Records/Burger in 2016 to a healthy dose of acclaim, they went out on the road, playing for audiences across North America, Australia, Europe and the U.K. During this time they began to forge the sound for their second offering, Zed for Zulu, released 6th September 2019 and they're back on tour again!
We have two tickets to giveaway for both BAAD in Glasgow on Wednesday 6th November and Union Chapel in London on Friday 8th November - a sold out show! Each prize includes a meet and greet too.
Terms and conditions – prize is for a pair of tickets to the selected show only, all travel and other expenses are the winners responsibility. Tickets are non-transferrable and non-refundable. Competition finishes at 12.00pm Tuesday 5th November and all winners will be announced 1:00pm the same day. Meet & greet is subject to change.
Paddle the Mississippi with the mighty Quapaw
True adventure awaits on the Mississippi River, one of the last great wildernesses in the United States. At first, the fast-flowing waterway with its tricky currents, mile-long river barges and unfriendly underwater life can be daunting, but you’re in the best of hands with the Quapaw Canoe Company.
Based in Clarksdale, Vicksburg and Helena (Arkansas) these experienced river masters know the Mississippi like no other. With them on board of one of their handmade canoes or at the back of a kayak convoy, you’ll be navigating Ol’ Man River like a pro in minutes, including all of its backwaters, bayous and so-called blue holes - pristine swimming holes along the banks that move constantly and make every trip unique.
Quapaw has successfully guided over 10,000 people on the river. All expeditions are outfitted with first-aid kits, rescue ropes, life preservers, cellular communication, top-notch life jackets and VHF marine radio. Its guides stringently practice safe canoeing and are knowledgeable in all aspects of wilderness survival and canoe rescue. In other words: it’s safer than taking a bath at home.
Quapaw have also been featured on the BBC as the guides for their Earth’s Great Rivers series. Click here to watch again.
The most popular river offerings are Montezuma to Quapaw (day trip or overnight), The Muddy Waters Wilderness (2-7 days), Shelby Forest to Mud Island (day trip or overnight), the Chickasaw Bluffs (2-5 days) and Vicksburg to Natchez (2-5 days) with all picnicking and camping on remote mid-channel river islands. The range includes almost 1,000 miles of river, so there are many choices of river sections and beautiful places to paddle.
If that’s not enough to get you on board, it’s also good to know that Quapaw runs its own Apprenticeship Program for the youth of the Mississippi Delta. For several years now, these youngster learn just about everything there’s to know about the river, boating, responsibility and business – which turns out to be a life’s calling for some, but a stellar opportunity for all.
The rules at Quapaw: respect yourselves, respect others and respect the River.
More information at Quapaw Canoe Company: http://www.island63.com
Historic Places in Louisiana
These historic sites and attractions located around Louisiana offer a glimpse in to the past as you travel back in time.
Louisiana State Museum
There are a total of nine museums throughout the state in the Louisiana State Museum collection, but visitors to New Orleans should include the French Quarter Five to their list which includes The Cabildo, The Presbytere, 1850 House, Madame John's Legacy and the New Orleans Jazz Museum at the Old U.S. Mint. These National Historic Landmarks are home to thousands of artefacts and art work that reflect Louisiana's historic and cultural legacy.
Visit Preservation Hall in New Orleans and listen to the sounds of traditional jazz played within the walls of the 1750s French Quarter building. Both veteran and younger musicians play at the hall continuing the effort to preserve and maintain the sounds of traditional jazz. Evening music begins at 8pm and admission is $15 p/person.
New Orleans Pharmacy Museum
The New Orleans Pharmacy Museum is an unusual museum located in the Vieux Carre Historic District. The historic building houses an extensive collection of pharmaceutical items from a time when pharmacists compounded their own medicines without the structure or knowledge of modern medicine. From showcasing the history of America’s first licensed pharmacist, Louis J Dufilho Jr, to antique surgical instruments, hand blown apothecary jars filled with crude medicines, to perfumes and cosmetics, the museum preserves the history of pharmacy and healthcare in Louisiana.
St. Charles Streetcar Line
Take a ride on New Orleans’ oldest electric streetcar line. This route covers seven miles of the city with the majority of the track running in the centre on St. Charles Avenue. Riding the historic streetcar line shows off the gorgeous historic homes and buildings, and tree lined streets from the Garden District to Tulane and Loyola Universities. It is the oldest continuously operating streetcar line in the world and has been in operation since 1835.
Take a tour of Houmas House Plantation and Gardens in Darrow where each visitor is thought of as a guest. The tours are kept small to small groups to properly display the beauty and intricacies of the plantation, originally named ‘The Sugar Palace’ during its antebellum days. Browse the gardens and enjoy an afternoon refreshment at the restaurant or Turtle Bar. Interesting fact - it was named after the native Houma people who originally occupied this area of Louisiana.
Tunica-Biloxi Tribe Pow Wow
Throughout the year in Marksville the Native American traditions that began more than 20,000 years ago and the culture of the Tunica-Biloxi tribe come to life with Pow Wow events. Tribal members are dressed in full regalia to dance and sing to the beat of drums, while crafts and Native American foods are also featured.
Biedenharn Museum and Gardens
If you are in Monroe you must visit the Biedenharn Museum and Gardens to travel back in time to the early 20th century and home of Joseph A Biedenharn - the first bottler of Coca-Cola. Tour the museum, house and beautiful gardens, which offers a large collection of Coca-Cola memorabilia including a replica soda fountain with a genuine soda jerk retelling the Biedenharn story.
Vermilionville Living History Museum
Vermilionville Living History Museum in Lafayette is a picturesque representation of a late 1700s-1800s village re-enacting how Acadians and Creoles created a new life in the Attakapas Region of the new Louisiana territory. The museum is across 23 acres filled with costumed artisans and musicians acting out the chores and activities of their daily lives.
Old State Capitol
The Old State Capitol is a 160-year-old National Historic Landmark located on a bluff overlooking the Mississippi River in downtown Baton Rouge. A preserved treasure of architecture this Gothic Revival structure has withstood war, fire, scandal and bitter debates. In 1990 the building went under a major restoration project and is now the Museum of Political History. You can book a tour, visit The Ghost in The Castle theatrical presentation or just wander the museum for free.
Frogmore Cotton Plantation and Gins
Head to the Frogmore Cotton Plantation and Gins in Ferriday to discover how the cotton industry has developed since the 1700s and the modern processes found today. Explore the deep history of slavery, slave customs, secret music and the relationships with the plantation masters. Frogmore is a must see site with various tour options that take you through the cotton gin evolution, walks you through authentically furnished slave quarters, you can view a rare steam gin plus other plantation dependencies. And don't miss the Delta Music Tour which chronicles the history of the area via the authentic music that was played throughout the Delta.
Charpentier District, Lake Charles
The Charpentier Historic District is on the National Register of Historic Places and covers more than 40 blocks of turn-of-the-century buildings of mixed styles with turrets, towers, gables, shingling, leaded glass and gingerbread accents on the porches and railings. The Charpentier (French for “carpenter”) District stands in homage to the carpenter architects who freely designed as they built, creating a unique Lake Charles style.
Natchitoches, (Nack-a-tish) the original French colony in Louisiana, is the oldest settlement in the Louisiana Purchase. Established in 1714, Natchitoches retains its European flavour through its architecture, heritage and lifestyle. Natchitoches is also well known for the filming of the movie Steel Magnolias.
No Man's Land, Louisiana's Final Frontier
The Neutral Strip region, (a.k.a. No Man's Land) draws its name from the area's brief stint as an official buffer zone between Spain and the United States following the Louisiana Purchase. When the United States purchased the territory from France, Spain and the U.S. were in conflict over the boundary south of Natchitoches. In part, this confusion derived from the region's long history, even before Spanish rule during the 1790s and 1800s, as a contested area with unclear boundaries. This is the place where the pirate met the cowboy, and where Native Americans, French, Spanish, Africans, Creoles, Cajuns, and American pioneers from the South and West met to build communities and a culture like no other.
For more information on any of the above attractions email Louisiana@deep-south-usa.com.
Win A Pair of Tickets to see the Blind Boys of Alabama this July!
We have a pair of tickets to give away to see the Blind Boys of Alabama at the Barbican Centre in London on Saturday 13th July as they collaborate with Amadou & Mariam. Bringing American Gospel back to its African source, the two artists draw threads between contemporary Afro pop and the gospel music which grew out of the same West African roots.
The Blind Boys of Alabama first formed as children in 1930s America, celebrating the gospel music they grew up with and showing that ’disability doesn’t have to be a handicap’. They are now recognised worldwide for their contribution to the genre and are winners of five Grammy awards.
To win tickets just enter your details below:
This competition has now closed!
Terms and conditions
Prize is for a pair of stall tickets to the selected show only on Saturday 13th July, all travel and other expenses are the winners responsibility. Tickets are non-transferrable and non-refundable. Competition finishes at 12.00pm Friday 5th July and the winner will be announced 1:00pm the same day. Tickets will be emailed to the winner. More show information available at:
About the Blind Boys of Alabama:
In the seven decades since the Blind Boys of Alabama first began singing together, America has witnessed a World War, the civil rights movement and the Summer of Love; the moon landing, Vietnam and the fall of the Berlin Wall; JFK, MLK, and Malcolm X; the invention of the jukebox, the atomic bomb and the internet. Through it all, the Blind Boys' music has not only endured, but thrived, helping both to define the sound of the American south and to push it forward through the 20th century and well on into the 21st. Praised by NPR as "pioneers," the group has transcended barriers of race and genre to become one of the most acclaimed and celebrated groups in modern music. From the Alabama Institute for the Negro Blind, where the original members met as children, all the way to The White House - where they've performed for three different presidents - the band's story is, in many ways, America's story, and that story is at the heart of their emotional new album, 'Almost Home.'
Recorded over four different sessions helmed by four different GRAMMY-winning producers in four different cities, 'Almost Home' recounts the band's remarkable journey, primarily through original songs written for them by an outstanding collection of artists including Valerie June, the North Mississippi Allstars, Phil Cook, John Leventhal, Marc Cohn, and Ruthie Foster among others. The record is the band's first in three years, following on the heels of 2014's 'Talkin' Christmas!' with Taj Mahal and their 2013 collaboration with Bon Iver's Justin Vernon, 'I'll Find A Way,' and it sees them picking up right where they left off, blending the sacred and secular, the traditional and innovative, the past and present.