Ever since it opened three years ago, this museum has been teaching kids about science, art and math through interactive experiences. But what really makes its 18 learning zones special is the focus on Baton Rouge. In the grocery store experience, children shop replicas of fresh Louisiana produce and seafood. In an exhibit about building structures, they cross a replica of downtown Baton Rouge’s own Mississippi River bridge.
Runners up: BREC’s Baton Rouge Zoo — 12.8%
Main Event — 9.6%
Louisiana Art & Science Museum — 8%
BREC’s Bluebonnet Swamp Nature Center — 5%
BEST PLACE TO SEE ART
LOUISIANA ART & SCIENCE MUSEUM — 24.9%
Remember being pressured in school to decide if you were the artsy or science type? Here, it’s OK to be both. Let the planetarium transport you around the solar system, and then gaze at American, European and Louisiana art.
LSU Museum of Art — 24.7%
The Foyer — 20.9%
Baton Rouge Gallery — 17.8%
Ann Connelly Fine Art — 10.3%
BEST PERFORMING ARTS GROUP
THEATRE BATON ROUGE — 28.4%
The show must go on—even in times of COVID-19. This nearly 75-year-old theater, known in recent years for its local takes on productions like Cabaret, Newsies and The Rocky Horror Show, found ways to innovate and keep people safe this spring by streaming some of its productions online. Bravo.
Runners up: Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra — 20.3%
Playmakers of Baton Rouge — 14.5%
Baton Rouge Ballet Theatre — 13.5%
No Show Comedy — 7.3%
BEST CHARITY/FUNDRAISER EVENT
HOLLYDAYS (JUNIOR LEAGUE OF BATON ROUGE) — 19.7%
The holiday season gets an early start thanks to the Junior League of Baton Rouge. Each October, shop for gifts from 200 merchants. Proceeds go toward various causes and partners.
Runners up: Bella’s Ball (Bella Bowman Foundation) — 15%
Fur Ball (Companion Animal Alliance) — 12.9%
Race for the Cure (Susan G. Komen) — 11.7%
Baton Rouge Best Dressed Ball (American Cancer Society) — 9.3%
BEST RADIO PERSONALITY
MATT MOSCONA, AFTER FURTHER REVIEW ON 104.5 ESPN RADIO — 27%
Whether you’re listening to him on the radio, streaming him on the Locked on LSU podcast or watching him on Facebook Live, hearing Moscona dissect LSU football feels like having a beer with your most sports-savvy friend. No wonder he’s won local and national awards, including a distinction as one of Radio Ink’s “Top Local Sports Talkers in America.”
Runners up: Murphy, Sam and Jodi, 96.1 The River — 25.2%
Richard Condon, Condon Uncensored on Eagle 98.1 — 23.1%
Jay Ducote, The Jay Ducote Show on Talk 107.3 — 21.4%
Jim Engster, Talk Louisiana on WRKF 89.3 — 7.7%
BEST RADIO STATION
102.5 WFMF — 13.9%
Whether the dance party is happening in your car or at your desk, Baton Rouge’s station for today’s hits has the soundtrack.
Runners up: 98.1 The Eagle — 13.4%
104.5 ESPN Radio — 13.1%
96.1 The River — 11.3%
89.3 WRKF — 10.6%
BEST TV NEWS PERSONALITY
SYLVIA WEATHERSPOON, WBRZ ANCHOR — 16%
Weatherspoon has said before that being on TV feels natural to her, and it shows. Her compassion and charm shines through whether she’s reporting a serious story or simply doing a storybook reading for kids on Facebook Live.
Runners up Pat Shingleton, WBRZ chief forecaster — 14.8%
Jay Grymes, WAFB chief meteorologist — 14.1%
Lauren Westbrook, WAFB anchor — 12.8%
Chris Nakamoto, WBRZ anchor — 12.7%
JAY DUCOTE, GOV’T TACO — 18.4%
He’s known in Baton Rouge and beyond for his radio show, TV appearances and speaking gigs. But food is what started Ducote’s journey. It continues this summer with the opening of the brick-and-mortar for his first restaurant, Gov’t Taco.
Runners up: Chris Motto, Mansurs on the Boulevard — 15.5%
John Folse, Chef John Folse & Company — 13.4%
Ryan André, Soji: Modern Asian — 11.7%
Don Bergeron, Bergeron’s City Market — 10.2%
BEST VENUE TO HOST A COMPANY EVENT
TOPGOLF — 25.5%
You don’t have to be into golf to recognize the magic that is Topgolf. Each golf ball is microchipped to track and analyze player accuracy and distance. While waiting for a turn to golf, coworkers can dig into burgers, sandwiches and cocktails. With a bonding experience like this, no one will even think to try a trust fall.
Runners up Red Stick Social — 21.5%
L’Auberge Casino & Hotel Baton Rouge — 13.2%
Louisiana Art & Science Museum — 7.3%
Renaissance Baton Rouge Hotel — 7.3%
BEST ANNUAL COMMUNITY EVENT
WEARIN’ OF THE GREEN PARADE — 29.8%
Baton Rouge’s most popular parade was postponed this year due to COVID-19 concerns. But revelers are already looking forward to the next time the parade covers its Perkins Road overpass and Garden District route in green beads.
Runners up: Live After Five — 18.2%
Spanish Town Mardi Gras Parade — 16.5%
White Light Night — 15.9%
CAAWS Mystic Krewe of Mutts Parade — 6.9%
BEST PLACE FOR A WEDDING RECEPTION
HOUMAS HOUSE AND GARDENS — 20.5%
More than 240 years old, Houmas House was once a sugarcane plantation with more than 500 slaves. Today, the mansion and grounds are used for history tours, movie sets, and weddings and events.
Runners up: White Oak Estate and Gardens — 17.3%
Louisiana’s Old State Capitol — 17.3%
Shaw Center for the Arts — 11.6%
Capitol Park Museum — 10.1%
BEST BAR TO WATCH SPORTS
WALK-ON’S BISTREAUX & BAR — 49.3%
Walk-On’s took Baton Rouge’s sports superfan culture and spread it across the country. In 2018, it was ranked by market research firm Technomic as the No. 1 fastest-growing full-service U.S. restaurant chain, and it will soon have restaurants in nine states.
Runners up: Mid City Beer Garden — 14.7%
The Bulldog — 8.3%
Ivar’s Sports Bar & Grill — .6%
George’s Place — 5.1%
BEST VENUE TO SEE LIVE MUSIC
The Varsity Theatre — 30.3%
The converted art-deco movie house at LSU’s North Gates has brought artists like Kevin Gates, Sister Hazel and Jenny Lewis to Baton Rouge. But local acts sound just as sweet from its stage.
Runners up: L’Auberge Casino & Hotel Baton Rouge — 18.1%
Manship Theatre – 12.1%
Superior Grill — 7.6%
The Texas Club — 7.5%