By Rebekah Giambroni

all is here and with it comes the Red River Revel Arts Festival. Running from Sept. 30 to Oct. 8, this year’s event is packed with music and events for everyone to enjoy. Revel Executive Director Logan Lewis said, “It’s using what we have here to encourage people to get off their phones and out to experience art, music, food, and their community.”

The annual event, celebrating its 47th year, hosts live music, local artists of all media, and great food. This year the musical acts include Paul Cauthen, guitarist Eric Gales, Sophie B. Hawkins, a tribute to Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, and many more. The Revel will offer a wide variety of acts from rock to country to gospel; no matter what gets your toes tapping, you will hear it there. There will also be performances by local groups like Vicki’s School of Dance, Jill’s Gymnastics, and a film screening thanks to the Robinson Film Center. Get your steps in while enjoying the music by checking out the talented artists from around the area, including photographers, painters, woodworkers, potters, and jewelry makers. 

For the kids, this year’s Revel has more activities than ever, including new events geared to preteens and teens. The youth area – which has been dubbed the “DMZ” or Discovery Maker Zone – is partnering with both Sci-Port and Army Corps of Engineers to provide more space and more activities. A ticket to Sci-Port will get you free admission to the Revel, or if you’re at the festival, you can get a discount on your ticket for Sci-Port.

There will be open play paintball and laser tag, as well as coordinated fun areas like foam brick building, the Brookshire’s Mini Store, or the Sci-Port Make and Take STEM activity. There will also be an obstacle course sponsored by Ochsner LSU Health, face painting, and HARK – a center to learn about the history of the Ark-La-Tex. If you happen to have a budding archeologist, there will be a mock dig site where your kid can dig for interesting items. The DMZ will even have its own music pavilion with youth-run music and activities kids of any age will enjoy. 

When you are ready to take a break and refuel, visit one of the food and drink booths. Whether you want to cool down with some lemonade or a margarita, they have you covered. Food options will include barbecue, gumbo, doughnuts, eggrolls, falafel, and lots more in between. Another new addition this year is a sports bar near the second entertainment pavilion, so you can enjoy the live performers and an LSU game while cooling off. 

Lewis said it was his desire to “create spaces that appeal to everyone in the family.”  With so much to hear, see, taste, and do, everyone will have so much to experience – especially fun! 

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