When Does it Feel Like Christmas in Lafayette, Louisiana?
When one thinks of Christmas, one often thinks of Christmas carols, gifts, and cold weather. Well, the weather in Acadiana very seldom cooperates with the Christmas season as it's usually "unseasonably warm" during this time of year. If you're hoping for colder weather, much less snow, January is usually your best shot.
Longtime KPEL personality and current KTDY "Chris and Bernie in the Morning" co-host Bernadette Lee said it very well one day on the air when she laid out how our weather patterns tend to work around Christmastime in Lafayette.
It's warm and muggy and nasty for awhile, then we get a cold front that comes in the week before Christmas and we all start eating gumbo and putting on our coats and our gloves, then it starts getting warm again and we are dealing with 82 degrees and hot weather for Christmas Day.
That's pretty much what happened in 2021 as we hit a record high for Christmas Day in Lafayette at 80 degrees. If you look back at the year-by-year high and low temperatures in the Hub City, you will certainly see a lot of warm days in our history.
So, When Does It Feel Like Christmas In Lafayette?
If we can't count on the weather to help us get into the Christmas spirit then when does it feel like Christmas in Lafayette?
We decided to ask our listeners that question and we received some very interesting questions.
When the Christmas Music Starts Playing
Two Christmas musical selections stood out to me from the listeners.
First, a true classic: "Please Come Home For Christmas."
The Charles Brown version is my favorite. It's such a beautiful song and is one of the most iconic Christmas songs, in my opinion.
The other is a Louisiana classic, "Louisiana Christmas Day" by Aaron Neville. It's lively and very Louisiana.
Pollard Christmas Trees
The Pollard family and Riversbend Farms in Crossnore, North Carolina, has been providing home-grown Fraser fir Christmas trees to Lafayette and the surrounding areas for more than 30 years!
As a kid, I remember getting excited every year to go pick out our family Christmas tree. Getting to cut down your first Christmas tree is like a rite of passage for boys in some families and I'll never forget the first time I got to put a saw to cut down our family Christmas tree!
Holiday (and Foot) Traffic
Of course, it doesn't feel like Christmas until the traffic in Lafayette gets almost unbearable and the stores become jam packed. Don't get me started on all of the construction projects happening across the Hub City during the holidays.
But hey, at least you're paying cheaper gas prices now than you have been for most of 2022.
Christmas Break - School Vacation
When I asked the question, "When Does it Feel Like Christmas in Lafayette?" to Chris Babin, President of the Acadiana Better Business Bureau, he gave a great answer: when students get out for their two-week Christmas break.
Other than the Summer Break, that two-week period was always my favorite time of the year as we got two holidays - Christmas and New Year's Day - in that one break. Great family get-togethers and plenty of food that featured dishes we only ate during that one time of the year makes for great memories!
Seeing The Lights At Acadian Village
Ever since I was a child, going to see the lights at Acadian Village has always been one of my absolute favorite things to do at Christmastime in Lafayette.
And this year, my wife and I were able to take our two kids - Micah and Adalynn - there for their first time.
Bernie Dancing While Singing Karaoke?
Our friends at 97.3 The Dawg gave us a very interesting answer when we asked our Christmas question.
I worked with Bernadette Lee for nearly 15 years. The first time I met her she put on a yeti mask and started making yeti noises. She is one of the most genuinely funny people I have ever met and has given me many laughs over the years.
So, would this story surprise me if it is indeed true?
By the way, Bernie is neither confirming nor denying the details of the story.
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Gallery Credit: Isabel Sepulveda