My brother recently got married and I took this opportunity to document what a true Cajun wedding is all about.
Since moving away from Louisiana 14 years ago and learning what life is like outside of the area where I grew up most of my life, I’ve realized that our weddings are not “typical” – we have some traditions that other cultures don’t necessarily follow. Here are some general guidelines to what I categorize as a true, Cajun wedding:
1. There is no real dress code – you can wear anything from jeans and cowboy boots to a suit if you wish. No one will look at you like you’re not dressed appropriately. No pretentious people here, that’s for sure.
2. We have buffet dinners, not sit down plated dinners. You choose what you want to eat from the buffet, when you want to eat it and go back for seconds if you’d like.
3. There’s no assigned seating at tables. You can sit where you like and even change seats during the evening. There’s no forced conversations between people you hardly know and no fussing about who will sit at which table or having to create place cards for each guest.
4. There will most likely be a Cajun band with a fiddle (not a violin) and a squeeze box (accordion).
5. You’ll see grown adults dancing with children and women dancing with each other. It really has nothing more to do with just having fun – plain and simple.
6. You’ll most likely have the time of your life. Cajun weddings are fun. I credit the typical “joie de vivre” spirit of the Cajun culture.
7. There will most likely be an open bar, with a self-serve keg.
8. Don’t be surprised if the wedding and reception are held on the grounds of a Catholic church and there’s plenty of drinking afterward.
9. At the reception, people will pin money on the bride and groom in exchange for a dance with them.
I’ve been to weddings where receptions consisted of assigned seating and plated dinners and buffet dinners with no music, dancing or alcohol. I’m here to tell you that a Cajun wedding is by far – the most fun and entertaining of the bunch. If you’re ever invited to attend a wedding in Cajun country, I encourage you to go. It’s an experience that you’ll remember for a lifetime.
I’d like to wish my brother and his new wife the very best in your lives together. We love you Dex and Jen :)