Tag Archives: Louisiana

Free Private “Campsite” in Mississippi

April 24, 2014 – Thursday

We left New Orleans French Quarter RV Resort at 9:15 am, going west on I-10 then north on the 55. Our first tourist stop today is the Country Market in Ponchatoula, LA. It’s a historical train depot with a few restored cars, an alligator in a wire mesh pen, and the depot sells crafts made by local people.

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The Ponchatoula Country Market

We continued north on 55 and entered Mississippi. Then west on 20 to the Clinton Visitor Center where we will get on the Natchez Trace Parkway. I like visitor centers, and this is one of the nicest I’ve seen. It even has a dog walk area and is situated in a beautiful landscaped park like area. We walk the dogs then go inside the center.

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The two volunteer ladies are very nice and give us maps and brochures on the Natchez Trace Parkway. I ask if we can spend the night in their parking lot and they say yes. They even call the local police to let them know we have permission. We walk around taking photos of the place and they come out to pet the dogs. They are proud of the center and rightly so. It costs $2 million to construct it. It resembles an 1800’s farmhouse. It has three porches, all with rocking chairs. There is a “Fallen Comrade” statue in the garden. The center opened in 2005.

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The volunteers leave at 5:00 pm and we are alone in our own beautiful free campsite for the night.

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New Orleans – Part 4

April 22, 2014  –  Tuesday (continued)

The tour was good, but it didn’t really cover Bourbon Street, and I want to show it to Bill, who has never been to New Orleans. It takes us, walking slow, fifteen minutes from the RV resort to get to Bourbon Street where all the action and crazies are. Since it’s a Tues and still daytime at 6 pm, I’m not sure what to expect.

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Kids in stroller petting the dogs

Kids in stroller petting the dogs

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People throwing beads from the balcony

People throwing beads from the balcony

Stroller dogs wearing Mardi Gras beads

Stroller dogs wearing Mardi Gras beads

Drunk sleeping it off

Drunk sleeping it off

Visitor center near RV park

Visitor center near RV park

The dogs sure did get a lot of attention on Bourbon St, and they had a lot of competition! It was fun taking them. People are always asking if they can take pictures of the dogs and stroller. The dogs were great, I didn’t even zip them in the stroller, so people could photograph them better.

We got back to the RV at 7:15. I worked on deleting and cropping photos till 11 pm, walked the dogs again to potty and called it a night.

 

New Orleans – Part 2


April 22, 2014  – Tuesday (continued)

The tour is interesting and our driver/guide is great. She explains things really good and with humor. It’s hard to take pictures thru the window from where I’m sitting. Bill who has the best seat, takes only a few pictures. 😦

Our first stop is the St Louis Cemetery #3

imageimageimageimageimageimageimageimageimageimageNext stop is at Morning Cafe for a fifteen minute break. I get an order of Beignets and a coffee. Still not thrilled with the French “donut” but I eat them anyway, then we rush next door to the Statue Garden to snap some pictures before getting back in the van.

imageimageSee Part 3 for the rest of the tour photos.

 

 

Vermilionville, Acadian Village, Avery Island and Jungle Gardens on Easter

April 20, 2014 – Easter Sunday

We wake up Easter morning after a good night sleep at Walmart. After morning routines, the dogs are put in their wire crate that they ride in when we travel. Luckily for us, they like their crate and don’t bark or try to get out when the RV is moving. They know when I turn the engine off, that it means they get to get out and explore something or potty. They get very anxious to get out every hour or so like I do.

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First touristy stop today is Vermilionville in Lafayette. It’s a Living History Museum and Folklore Park of the Acadian, Native American and Creole cultures. The place includes historical homes, gardens, artifacts, costumed crafts people, boat tours, restaurant, gift shop and live music on the weekends. We get there and load the stroller dogs up, hoping we can take them with us. They aren’t open for another twenty minutes, so we stroll around the grounds in the “free area”. It’s pretty and next to a river with lots of green grass and trees. We take photos and wait for the gift shop/entrance to open.

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When the gift shop opens we ask if the dogs can go in with the stroller. They say no, so we don’t get to pay admission and see behind the fence. Its starting to get warm and it looked like it would take a long time to see everything, so we didn’t want to leave the dogs in the RV. Oh well, we had a nice time walking around and I have other things to visit on my list today. Took a few more pictures on our way back to the RV.

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Next stop is the LARC’s Acadian Village, also in Lafayette.

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The parking lot is empty when we pull in but I see a few people inside the gate, so I walk up and ask if they are open. They hesitate and say just for an hour or so, because they had a tour bus full of German tourist coming and we could come in for awhile. I asked if the dogs could join us in the dog stroller and they said ok if they didn’t get out. Back to the RV just as the tour bus pulls in and lots of people get off the bus.

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By the time we get back and pay our entrance fee, the tour has started. We catch up to them and listen to the guide explain things in German then translate to English. The tourist noticed the stroller dogs and started coming over and making a fuss over them. We didn’t understand a word they said. Then they started taking pictures of them.

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The tour was in German and English, so it was taking a long time, so we went around them and walked the place on our own

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Next touristy destination was Avery Island, the Tabasco Factory and Jungle Gardens. The Tabasco tour and factory were closed due to it being Easter, but the Jungle Gardens were open. We went in the gift shop and paid the admission for the three mile driving tour thru the Jungle.

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The 200 acre Jungle Gardens are home to more than 20,000 egrets and other birds that nest on the platforms in a lake called Bird City.

After we left the Island, we headed back on I-90 east to Raceland where we stayed at a Walmart. Put the dogs in their customized dog carriers and did a bit of shopping. Dogs posed in front of the Easter candy, but I didn’t buy any for them or myself. 🙂

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Spent the rest of the night working on photos and writing in my trip journal.

In Louisiana and Meeting New Grandkids

April 11, 2014. – Friday

We left Pat’s house in Rowlett at 10:00 am, gassed up the RV and made our way back to I-20 going east towards Shreveport, LA. We stopped at the LA state line Visitor Center for photos and brochures.

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Once got to Shreveport, we took I-49 south to Ajax, northeast of Natchitoches. Arrived at our 1/2 price Passport America discounted campground called Ajax Country Living RV Park at 4:00 pm.

Walked the dogs around the campground and checked out the facilities and lake. There are only about ten other rv’s here, all nice motor homes and fifth wheels. It’s naturally pretty here with wide open green areas, trees and pretty lake. The restroom, laundry and office areas were kinda ugly and old. There was still some Christmas decor in the restroom! With a little tender care and decor, this would be a very nice campground.

Country Living RV Park

Our RV surrounded by green grass and trees

Our RV surrounded by green grass and trees

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Lake at Ajax Country Living RV Park

Lake at Ajax Country Living RV Park

Our RV at far right

Our RV at far right

We put the dogs in the RV and walked across the street to a BBQ restaurant recommended by the campground. Nothing fancy, kinda run down, but the food was good. Bill had butter beans in BBQ sauce and I had chicken, macaroni, and baked beans.

Our meal from BBQ hole in the wall across the street

Our meal from BBQ hole in the wall across the street

After walking the dogs again, I did the first laundry of the trip since it was convenient and right in the campground near the RV.

April 12, 2014. – Saturday

We left Ajax Country Living RV Park at 10:20 continuing south on I-49 towards Mike’s place in Alexandria, LA. I found an RV resort fairly close, about 10-15 minutes from their apartment. We registered for a week at River Cities RV Park in Boyce, just north of Alexandria. We got here at 11:50, a nice short driving day for me.

We decided on this campground because it was close to I-49 and is surrounded by a fence with a security gate and cameras. It also has full hook ups, laundry, restroom/showers, and all 38 pull thru sites are on cement with grass between sites. Bill will be spending time with his son and grandkids this week, so he wanted a nice safe place for me and the dogs while he is gone.

This is the first time I’ve been to a resort that had a 24 hour kiosk at the gate to check in. I called ahead of time to ask about availability and how the kiosk would work. The person answering the phone said he would meet us there and check us in “the old fashion way, in an office”. As we pulled up to the gate, he opened it with a remote and walked up to the RV and introduced himself as the owner. Super friendly man said him and his wife bought the empty field and turned it into the RV resort, so it was fairly new. They don’t live on site, but are only five minutes away he said. The super friendly owner talked to us about fifteen minutes before we even got parked. In his tiny office we saw the tv screen with a view of four different angles in the park from the security cameras. He showed us the large nice laundry room and restroom/showers, then went back to weeding the sites as his wife rode the law mower cutting grass.

River Cities RV Park in Boyce,LA

River Cities RV Park in Boyce,LA

Entrance gate and Kiosk to self register

Entrance gate and Kiosk to self register

Our RV faces a closed rodeo complex

Our RV faces a closed rodeo complex

We have wide open views around the RV

We have wide open views around the RV

The rodeo complex in front of the RV is huge and looks brand new. The RV park owner said he thinks the business went bankrupted either before or just after opening it. Nobody is ever there.

There are only about 10 RVs in the park. The owner said most are contractors and have reserved their sites for at least a month. Most are gone during the day, so it’s vey quiet here, and private feeling. We got to pick our own site, so we have nobody parked on our sides, and two large open areas in front and one the driver side of the RV. We see the other RVs from our back window.

Mike and his family and 5 kids got here around 5:00 pm. After hugs, photos and a tour of our RV, we all piled into two vehicles and they drove us by the property they are buying and putting a new double wide on, possibly next month. Right now they live in an apartment that is too small. He has another baby being born this week. Next we went to dinner at the Golden Corral. The food was plentiful and I stuffed myself so much I shouldn’t eat the rest of the week. Even Bill ate a little. Mike drove Bill and I back to the RV after dinner.

Bills son Mike and his family came to the RV park.

Bills son Mike and his family came to the RV park.

Back row: Sabrina, Mike, Bill, Darin, Kendrick, James,  front row JR and Moriah:

Back row: Sabrina, Mike, Bill, Darin, Kendrick, James,
front row JR and Moriah:

We spent the rest of the evening relaxing and playing with the dogs.

April 13, 2014 – Sunday

Today, Mike drove over and picked Bill up at 11:00 am. They are going to Chucky Cheese for one of the Moriah’s 4th birthday. Since I didn’t know how long they would be gone or what or where they would go afterwards, I stayed at the RV with the dogs. Bill could probably use a break from me the dogs and the RV after 13 days traveling together! I’m sure I’ll get to see pictures when he gets back.

It started to rain at 2:00. We were suppose to get rain and lightning to tomorrow, but by evening and into the night it poured along with lots of thunder and lightning.