Entertainment : Bands to Spice Up Cajun Festival

D. L. Menard, "the Cajun Hank Williams," will headline the 1994 Southern California Cajun & Zydeco Festival June 4-5 at the Rainbow Lagoon, adjacent to the Long Beach Convention Center.

Menard and his band, the Louisiana Aces, top a six-act lineup that includes Walter Mouton & the Scott Playboys who, according to the festival promoter, have played only one Saturday night concert outside their hometown of Scott, La., since the '50s.

Also from Louisiana, accordionist Steve Riley & the Mamou Playboys and Nathan & the Zydeco Cha-Chas will be making return appearances. The Poullard Brothers, from Texas, and Joe Simien, a Los Angeles transplant, round out the bill.

Promoter Franklin Zawacki said he is going ahead with the eighth annual festival even though he lost about $40,000 last year because of heavy rain and competition from a Troubadours of Folk festival held at UCLA the same weekend.

While the odds are against a repeat of last year's unseasonable downpour, the Cajun & Zydeco festival will again coincide with the other festival, which has been renamed "Troubadours of Music and Crafts Festival."

Troubadour fest promoter Jim Rissmiller said he decided against changing the dates of his festival because he wants to establish it in fans' minds.

In addition to the music, the Cajun & Zydeco festival will feature food booths from a variety of area restaurants plus dance, music and cultural workshops from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. each day. Ticket prices have not been announced. Information is available from Comprehensive Child Development in Long Beach, which helps organize various events and receives some proceeds from the festival: (310) 427-3713.

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