Shelley Johnson, executive director
Kaylen Fletcher, public relations manager, (800) 456-7952 

Bureau to Give Press Tour Featuring
Mardi Gras in Southwest Louisiana 

LAKE CHARLES, La. (December 20, 2011)--The Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana Convention & Visitors Bureau will host 10 travel writers from all over the United States and Canada for a Southwest Louisiana Mardi Gras press tour set for Saturday, Feb. 18 through Wednesday, Feb. 22. 

The visit will give bureau staff the opportunity to promote Calcasieu Parish, while enticing travel writers to include the area in future articles and publications.  

While in Southwest Louisiana, the group will tour the one-hundred year old Margaret Place District, the Creole Nature Trail All-American Road, the Mardi Gras Museum at the Central School Arts & Humanities Center, and of course, they will join in the Mardi Gras festivities and attractions throughout the area. No trip to Southwest Louisiana would be complete without a feast. The group will be treated to a variety of tastes at local restaurants and eateries including the famous Southwest Louisiana Boudin Trail.

Journalists contributing to publications like AAA Home & Away, Pathfinders Travel, American Profile, San Antonio Express News, Midwest Traveler,, and American Way will be amongst the writers on the trip.

Press trips like the Mardi Gras tour are an important way for the bureau to get the message out about the attractions and experiences available in Southwest Louisiana. In 2011, more than $9 million worth of free publicity was secured through these efforts.

For more information, contact Kaylen Fletcher at the Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana Convention & Visitors Bureau at (337) 436-9588 or (800) 456-SWLA.