John Schneider’s going on a sea cruise, and he wants you to tag along.

The actor/producer/writer/singer recently announced “John Schneider Offshore,” a four-night trip in November aboard the Carnival Elation with a stop in Cozumel. The fun begins the night before in New Orleans.

“We’re going to start it with a pub crawl and a ghost tour. I’ve done the pub tour on my own, (laugh) and I’ve done the ghost tour with the great folks there at Bloody Mary’s (Tours),” Schneider said from his film studio in Holden. “I think that’s a great way to start the night before, for folks to get a taste of New Orleans, because you know a lot of people will be coming in from elsewhere.

“It’s on the short list of must-dos in, I think, everyone’s life all around the world. It’s a big draw for this,” Schneider said of the Big Easy.

After a night’s hotel stay, the group will go on a city and cemetery tour. The pre-events, limited to 48 people, can be booked with or without booking the cruise, Schneider noted.

This package runs $450 per person.

Those on the cruise will head to the Port of New Orleans that afternoon to board the Elation.

“We’ll have 100 couples or so, or 100 rooms, and it’s going to be a blast. We’re showing movies, singing songs, answering questions, talking about the movie industry, or the television industry, or music, whatever people want to talk about,” Schneider said.

Schneider, who, in addition to acting, has dabbled in country music, plans to give a small concert on the ship.

“It’s going to be me on a stool with a guitar, a very intimate thing, no flash, no glitter.”

He has that same casual attitude about the cruise itself.

“Just a trip with John where hopefully people will have good questions that they want answered. And they get a little education on the entertainment business.”

The cruise leaves from New Orleans on Nov. 5. Interior staterooms start at $494, oceanview rooms $534 per person based on double occupancy. Single supplements are available. A deposit of $150 per person is due May 1, with the final payment due by Aug. 1.

For more information or to book the trip, call Geauxing Places Travel, (225) 665-7050 or go to

N.O. Hilton honored

Cvent has named the Hilton New Orleans Riverside as one of the Top 100 meeting hotels in the U.S.

Cvent is a cloud-based enterprise event management platform. It ranked the hotel sitting next to the Mississippi River as No. 22 overall and the top meeting hotel in the Crescent City.

The hotel was recognized for its ability to accommodate small and large groups in its 140,000 square feet of meetings space. The hotel recently added 170 more access points to its Wi-Fi capabilities, and plans a ballroom renovation in the near future.

Dance halls online

University of Louisiana at Lafayette folklorist John Sharp has launched

The website contains information about more than 1,500 dance halls, past and present. The website tells the story of Louisiana dance halls through anecdotes, grainy black and white photos, playbills and more.

Sharp is assistant director for research at the Center for Louisiana Studies at UL-Lafayette.

For the year-and-a-half-long project, Sharp “sifted through old newspapers, scoured library archives, gathered oral histories, and collected photographs.

He’s interviewed musicians, dancers, club owners, and historians, and gleaned information from comment sections on websites and social media, a news release said.

The site also has a feature that allows visitors to submit their personal stories and photos about the halls, their owners, and musicians who played them.

“It’s not a finished project, but a framework or antenna for attracting additional information and images about these much-loved establishments,” Sharp said.

The website is being funded by the Lafayette Convention and Visitors Commission, which developed a tourism brochure based on Sharp’s research.

Sharp is also completing a full-length documentary titled “Dancehalls of Louisiana.” It’s funded with $20,000 awarded in 2012 by the Louisiana Filmmakers Grant Fund Program. He hopes to have the documentary ready to screen by the end of this year.

Dancehalls once were more than simply a place to kick up one’s heels on a Saturday night. They were community hubs, places where entire families often gathered. Adults danced, and traded news and gossip. Children often played outside, where there might be barbecuing and games.

“Their heyday in Louisiana was from about World War II until roughly the late 1960s,” Sharp said.

Dancehalls already listed on the site can be searched by name, parish or city. Entries include photos and contact information.

The site also contains a digitized map pinpointing the geographical distribution of dance halls.

For more about or the Center for Louisiana Studies, contact Sharp at (337) 482-1320 or

Louisiana Travels is a column about travel destinations and events in Louisiana. Email items for Louisiana Travels to or