Many years ago, the Cajuns of South Louisiana celebrated an old custom that they brought here from their native France and Acadia. When the Cajuns first settled in the swamps and woods of South Louisiana they had no refrigeration. As a solution, each family would wait until the appropriate time each fall to butcher the hogs to have meat for the winter. They would crisscross the countryside, taking time to help each other finish their "boucherie." When the duties were complete, the families would gather round a warm fire and enjoy a feast prepared for that special occasion. When it was time to go home, each family would get a certain portion of the butchered hog as their share of the day's work. In this way, the Cajuns banded together and learned to survive.
To keep this heritage alive the Sorrento Lions Club members would hold a small gathering in the fall each year, called a "boucherie." This gathering began in the 1960's at George Savario's camp located in Acy, just east of Sorrento. He was a Lions Club Charter Member and Mayor of Sorrento. In 1978, three Lions Club members, John N. LeBlanc, Sr, A. J. Kling, Jr and Roland Melancon suggested turning the "boucherie" into a large festival that is now a three-day event and open to everyone.
In the early 1980's, Mayor John N. LeBlanc, Jr. and the Town Council passed a resolution requesting the Louisiana Legislature to name Sorrento the "Boucherie Capital of the World." This resolution was presented to Senator Joe Sevario and Representative Juba Diez. With their help, the Louisiana Legislature proclaimed Sorrento the "Co-Boucherie Capitol of the World." Sorrento shares this title with Marksville, Louisiana, who puts on a similar festival.
Since 1981, there has been a "Cracklin Cooking Contest" to name the "Cracklin Cooking Champion". This champion represents Sorrento at various functions throughout the year. In 1987, a "Champion of Champions Cooking Contest" began. This contest has former Cracklin Cooking Champions competing against each other for the prestigious title. In 1995, a "Jambalaya Cooking Contest" began. Every year, a Beauty Pageant crowns "Miss Boucherie." In the beginning it was only for the "Miss" category, but in 1986, the pageant opened up to all age groups. Due to the effects of Hurricane Katrina, the 2005 festival wasn't held until April, 2006. It turned out to be one of our best festivals in years.
Now the Sorrento Lions Club holds the Boucherie Festival the third full weekend of October each year.