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Faunsdale hosts festival

FAUNSDALE &8212; For two days a year in the spring Faunsdale, usually a town with less than 100 residents, transforms into a bustling thoroughfare for lovers of crawfish. This weekend the Faunsdale Crawfish Festival will draw between 5,000- 10,000 guests.

The festival has been going on for the last 17 years and is the brainchild of John &8220;Ca-john&8221; Broussard. Originally from south of Baton Rouge, La., Broussard began farming crawfish on his own after moving to the area more than 50 years ago.

When asked how many crawfish connoisseurs his famous event will draw, Broussard says he&8217;s not a betting man.

Whether they are boiled, fried or baked into a pie, Broussard and his crew of workers from the Faunsdale Bar and Grill, will dish up approximately 15,000 crawfish over the course of two days.

Two of Broussard&8217;s signature offerings are crawfish pies and pistolettes, which is a Cajun dinner roll made with crawfish and cheese. Each pie is handmade by Broussard&8217;s mother, Jewel.

The timing of the festival correlates with the harvesting of the crawfish themselves. Broussard said crawfish reach their peak in spring, and the ponds are drained off for the summer, as opposed to catfish, which are harvested in the summer.

First-time attendee John Paschall of Ozark, like many festival-goers, opted to go for the boiled variety served in a large container with corn and potatoes on the side.

Sitting atop plastic crates and using his hands on the mudbugs Paschall said the best way to eat them is anyway you can.