Natchitoches May Play Host to Statewide Classic Car Tour


As I write this I’m all excited about a project!

I tossed out another idea I had for today’s column so that I could tell you about what I think would be a nice little boost for our old town.

A man named Tripp Rabalais of Harvey organized a Louisiana Classic Car Tour last year, which took place mostly in south Louisiana.  This year he is thinking about starting the tour in Natchitoches.

How cool is that.

Everybody loves our Back to the ’50’s Car Show in October, and this would be an opportunity to see about 200 vehicles you’ve likely never seen before come to visit us.

Tripp says that newer cars, particularly cool cars like Chevrolet Camaros, Dodge Challengers and Ford Mustangs will be welcome.  Although older cars, of course, like my 1939 Chrysler Imperial, would make up the largest part of the tour.

He said that last year’s tour was a huge success, one that got Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser involved. The 2017 tour, to be run in mid-July, should be even bigger.

Tripp got my name and email from a column I’d done some time back for the Natchitoches Parish Journal about my 1939 Imperial and contacted me to see if I wanted to get involved.

He’s looking to center the tour around places of interest and neat things to see.

When I told him I happened to be a member of the Natchitoches Parish Tourist Commission and that I could put him in touch with the people he needs to know in order to organize the Natchitoches visit, he was pleased.  I explained to him that one of the coolest tourist attractions we have is the full-scale replica of Fort St. Jean Baptiste and he said that kind of thing is just what he is looking for.

I also mentioned the Grande Ecore Visitor Center, which combines exhibits on the Red River and local history and nature, which is another likely spot for the classic car drivers to visit.

Of course, the drivers of all those cars will get hungry and they will descend on Natchitoches Parish restaurants to fill their tummies and will try to spend a little time shopping on Front Street.

So, it’s been a good afternoon for me.  I will get to participate in an event involving something I love, classic cars, and will be able to assist our tourist industry during a very slow time of the year.

I will be advising you more about the event as the time approaches but if you have any ideas or questions, please let me know.  I can be reached at

And if you have a classic car, please think about joining us!