From the Seattle Times: It’s 9:30 a.m. and the drinking and dancing are raging at Fred’s Lounge, amid a mix of Cajun French music, waltzes and two-steps, with cans of Miller Lite the breakfast of choice.

The Saturday-morning party from the windowless, 66-year-old bar is broadcast live throughout the South Louisiana prairie on 1050 AM out of Ville Platte, and the music has been credited with helping to sustain the Cajun French culture since just after World War II.

Fred’s manager, Sue Vasseur, known as Tante Sue de Mamou, worries about the survival of the Louisiana French culture. The current generation, she said, isn’t picking up the French language, which is part of the soul of the Acadian people who settled in Louisiana in the mid-1700s, when they were expelled from the present-day Canadian province of Nova Scotia after refusing to swear their allegiance to the British crown.

“I’m hoping it’s going to continue. They are teaching French in our schools here now in Mamou and Evangeline Parish. So I think possibly some of it will rub off on our grandchildren, our great-grandchildren,” said Vasseur, 81, wearing a pistol holster of cinnamon schnapps on her hip as dancers whirled to a 10-button accordion and a singer belting out a love song in French.

There’s a major effort in Louisiana, a state named for French King Louis XIV, to restore the French language. It’s part of a resurgence in cultural pride, and there are signs the decline in French speakers has slowed.  Continuez.