Press Release
Oct. 20, 2016
For Immediate Release
Brittany Racca
(337) 365-1540
(888) 942-3742
Iberia Parish Convention and Visitors Bureau Logo

El Festival Espanol de Nueva Iberia
NEW IBERIA, La. -- The focus of this year's El Festival Espanol de Nueva Iberia on Nov. 18-20, 2016 is to recognize the many contributions of the Spanish settlers to our culture. It also celebrates the 1779 founding of Nueva Iberia (New Iberia) by 16 Spanish families and creates an educational and cultural exchange of food, music, art and history between New Iberia and the Andalusia region of Spain.

This year's festival theme will focus on "Remembering Francisco Bouligny." The event will start on Friday, Nov. 18 from 6 - 9:30 pm and continue on Saturday, Nov. 19 from 7 a.m. - 3 p.m. The festival will close on Sunday, Nov. 20 with a Mass of Thanksgiving at 11 a.m. at St. Peter's Catholic Church.

Francisco Bouligny was Gov. Bernardo Galvez's second in command and responsible for bringing 16 Spanish families from Malaga, Spain to found the City of New Iberia in April 1779. The local town square is named Bouligny Plaza in his honor. Among the Spanish families are names like Romero, Segura, Lopez, Prados, Villatoro (modern day Viator), Garrido (modern day Gary) and Miguez (sometimes spelled Migues).  

A "Running of the Bulls" 5K, a re-enactment of the arrival of Bouligny and the families, a paella and tapas cookoff, a family genealogy display and Spanish guitar and flamenco dancing will highlight the festival.

There will be a free lecture in the Essanee Theater by Dr. Michael Martin titled "Remembering Francisco Bouligny" on Friday night at 6 p.m. Cost of tickets for the Gala following the lecture will be $75 per ticket. Entertainment will include Spanish guitarists and flamenco dancers. There will be food from various restaurants and wine, water and sangria will be included. A ticket includes the Gala, the Bayou Teche Museum Spanish exhibit and the Lecture by Dr. Martin, and extended membership for 2017 to the Spanish Association, LAENI, Inc. Reserved tables of eight are available at a cost of $800.

The cemetery tour on Saturday at 3 p.m. is a fundraiser and ticketed event for the St. Peter Cemetery Committee to help make improvements in the cemetery. Actors with the Iberia Performing Arts League will be performing.

Please visit for the full list of events and times. To purchase festival posters and for more information on the event and Iberia Parish's Spanish roots, contact Ebrar Reaux, El Festival EspaƱol Chairman, at (337-349-7343) or You can also read his 2015 guest blog here.

Spanish Festival Walking Parade
Spanish Festival 1st pageant queens
The Iberia Parish Convention & Visitors Bureau is the official parish marketing agency promoting New Iberia, Avery Island, Jefferson Island, Jeanerette, Loreauville and Delcambre as a destination. Marketing programs target leisure travelers, business travelers, media, entertainment industry, and the travel trade including group tour planners, meeting planners, sports planners and special event planners. The bureau operates a parish welcome center in New Iberia.
For more information on parish events and tourism assets, call the bureau at 337-365-1540 or visit
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Iberia Parish Convention & Visitors Bureau
2513 Hwy 14 | New Iberia, LA | 70560
(337) 365-1540 | (888) 942-3742