The Jambalaya Shoppe is celebrating its 25th anniversary with an event from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at the Gonzales Civic Center.

The celebration will include free jambalaya, cake and beverages; music; a comedian; door prizes; games; and inflatables.

Without any food service experience, Stefan and Cheryl Fontenot decided to open a shop selling jambalaya in the 1990s. On her way to tell her employers that she couldn't clean houses anymore, she had a vision "of people lined up at a local eatery for a good home-cooked meal." It was that moment that the Jambalaya Shoppe was born, Cheryl Fontenot said.

They had never cooked jambalaya in anything larger than a pot on the kitchen stove. Within two weeks, the first Jambalaya Shoppe was up and running. While there was many continued struggles ahead and many lessons to be learned, Cheryl Fontenot said her belief in God helped them through.

Today, The Jambalaya Shoppe has 13 locations and is planning to expand.