NEW ORLEANS -- Two parishes in southeast Louisiana are launching a joint promotion to draw tourists from each other.
Tangipahoa Parish is north-northeast of New Orleans, stretching from the north shore of Lake Pontchartrain north, toward Mississippi.
Lafourche Parish is southwest of New Orleans, split by a long bayou that ends at the Gulf of Mexico.
Now, tourism officials in each parish are encouraging visits from the other. Each has posted suggested itineraries for day-trips or overnight getaways.
Suggested itineraries for Lafourche include the parish's Cajun Bayou Food Trail, which highlights restaurants featuring Cajun cuisine. It also includes outdoor activities like airboat tours and local cultural spots.
Tangipahoa Parish is highlighting its Global Wildlife Center, where visitors can hand-feed animals. Also featured are pumpkin-picking at local farms and the annual Louisiana Renaissance Fest.
"We know that time is more precious than ever and that many people are now planning vacations closer to home," said Timothy Bush, CEO of Louisiana's Cajun Bayou Tourism in Lafourche Parish. "We took a closer look around our own state to see which nearby parishes might want to help us turn their residents into our guests, and vice versa."
"The concept of cross-pollination to build visitation was a no-brainer for our parishes," Carla Tate, executive director of the Tangipahoa Parish Convention and Visitors Bureau , said in the joint news release. "We have a lot in common, including wonderful outdoor adventures, delicious food and fabulous festivals. But we're different enough that we complement each other rather than truly compete against each other for visitors."
The joint effort is called the Explore More campaign, and tourism officials said it was driven in part by a challenge issued by Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser for Louisiana's tourism entities to find innovative ways to partner with each other.