Gov. Nungesser launches Atchafalaya Water Heritage Trail


Press Release – BATON ROUGE – Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser spent today cutting ribbons at three different kiosk locations along the Atchafalaya Water Heritage Trail, which spans the 14 parishes in south-central Louisiana that are a part of the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area. “The Atchafalaya Water Heritage Trail is essential to our uniquely Louisiana story,” said Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser. “Water has always been essential to our culture and heritage, and this trail showcases this story.”

In 2006, Congress designated the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area as a region with significant natural, scenic, cultural, historical and recreational resources as well as offering a unique blend of European, African, Caribbean and Native American cultures. As a truly fascinating place here in the middle of the United States, it has been nicknamed “America’s Foreign Country.”

The Water Heritage Trail tells the “water story” of the region and how it connected with the land and its people. This self-guided trail explains how the waters became and remains a distinctive influence on the life and landscapes of the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area. This interactive educational experience leads its explorers through water-related sites of natural, cultural or historical significance.

“By tying the 14 parishes of the ANHA together with the Water Heritage Trail we have highlighted the story of the Atchafalaya’s importance in shaping our history and future,” said Steven Fullen, Executive Director of the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area. “I look forward to using the trail and its informational kiosks as a springboard for promoting our parish partner’s various educational and recreational events and programs.”

“One of the goals of the Atchafalaya Trace Commission is not only to educate the public about how the Atchafalaya and the various connected waterways have and will continue to influence our way of life—but also to navigate Louisianans and out-of-state visitors throughout the 14 parishes,” said Carrie Stansbury, Atchafalaya Trace Commission Chair and St. Mary Parish commission appointee. “The trail’s kiosks and associated maps will have adventurers exploring a great deal of the state including those areas less traveled.”

More information regarding the Water Heritage Trail can be found at Information regarding the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area can be found at