Laura Siu-Nguyen launched Night Market BTR last year. She has even bigger plans for 2024

For Laura Siu-Nguyen, Honduras will always be home. It’s where she was born and raised. It’s where her parents still live and run their business.

But, Nguyen has found a second home in Baton Rouge.

The Capital City is where she moved after marrying her husband, Kenny. It’s where she found a welcoming group of friends. And, it’s where she hopes to foster a thriving community that’s as proud of the city as she is.

“After meeting a lot of different people who love Baton Rouge and are invested in staying here and going to events, I ended up going from (attending) an event to planning an event, to working at different places that have allowed me to see the different aspects of what Baton Rouge has to offer,” she says.

Though not originally from Louisiana, the 33-year-old runner, corgi mom and event planner is no stranger to the state. Growing up, her family would take summer vacations to two international destinations: Disney World or New Orleans.

She moved from Honduras 15 years ago to attend college in New Orleans and has been residing in Baton Rouge since 2017. In just seven years in the Capital Region, Nguyen has held jobs in marketing, development and human resources, attended countless community events and even planned her own—including last month’s Night Market BTR, which drew over 6,000 attendees.

Since starting the Asian cultural festival last year, Nguyen has curated a lineup of vendors from across Baton Rouge and surrounding areas like Lafayette and New Orleans, giving them a place to share their businesses with a new audience. At the same time, the event serves as a way to expose Baton Rouge residents to the diversity of the city while bringing together those from different cultural backgrounds.

It wasn’t Nguyen’s only accomplishment in 2023. She was named Woman of the Year by Curate For Women Who Work, a network that connects and uplifts female entrepreneurs. And, she became a U.S. citizen after working at it for 12 years.

She’s determined to make 2024 just as special as last year, with hopes to grow her family, have a third Night Market in May and to keep making Baton Rouge better.

“I always believe in this,” Nguyen says. “You either win or learn, you never lose.”

This article was originally published in the March 2024 issue of 225 magazine.