Attractions and Things to Do in Downtown Alexandria Louisiana
Alexandria, Pineville and several surrounding nearby towns have a variety of attractions and things to do.
From museums and zoos, to outdoor recreation and historical sites, there is something to do for area residents, and visitors alike!
Alexandria Museum of Art
The Alexandria Museum of Art (AMoA) was founded in 1977 and occupies an historic Rapides Bank Building on the banks of the Red River. The bank building was constructed in 1898 and is listed on the National Historic Register.
The Museum entered operates a collaborative endeavor agreement with Louisiana State University of Alexandria (LSUA). AMoA now also serves as a downtown campus for LSUA classes and is host to multidisciplinary community events, including concerts and recitals, lectures, yoga classes, Second Saturday Markets, and Museum Afterhours. These events support all art forms – film, literature and poetry, songwriting and visual arts.
Typically, The Museum holds between five and seven exhibitions each year, displaying a variety of historic and contemporary subjects. AMoA offers multidisciplinary programming surrounding every exhibit, including lectures and master classes on the subject of or in the medium of the exhibit.
AMoA is located 933 2nd Street in downtown Alexandria. Phone 318.443.3458 for information and current hour of operation. An admission fee is charged.
Louisiana History Museum in downtown Alexandria
Louisiana History Museum
The Louisiana History Museum, located in downtown Alexandria, is dedicated to collecting, presenting, interpreting and promoting understanding of the wealth of history associated with Alexandria, and all of Louisiana. The museum maintains one of the foremost collections of historical objects in the state.
The collection has grown from several display cases upstairs in the Alexandria Genealogical Library to over 50 displays and exhibits on the ground floor of the historic Alexandria Public Library.
The building housing the Louisiana History Museum and Alexandria Genealogical Library started life as the Alexandria Public Library in 1907. Admission is free and guided tours can be arranged.
The Louisiana History Museum is located at 503 Washington Street. Phone 318.487.8556 for more information or visit the website of the Louisiana History Museum.
Coughlin-Saunders Performing Arts Center
The Coughlin-Saunders Performing Arts Center is located at 1202 Third Street, in downtown Alexandria.
This beautiful facility, opened in 2004, features a 615-seat state-of-the-art theater, and is owned by the City of Alexandria Louisiana and operated under contract by the Arts Council of Central Louisiana.
The Arts Center is the location of concerts, plays, recitals, ballets, dramas, musicals, Rapides Symphony Orchestra performances and a wide variety of cultural events and performing arts.
The facility, and its lobby, can be rented for receptions and special events by businesses, schools, churches and other groups.
Arna Bontemps African American Museum
The museum in downtown Alexandria is housed in the restored home that was the birthplace of the poet Arna Bontemps, renowned as one of the leaders of the Harlem Renaissance.
The museum and cultural center is located at 1327 3rd Street, and is one of the featured sites on the Louisiana African American Heritage Trail.
St. Francis Xavier Cathedral
The first Catholic church, St. Francis, was built in 1817 in Alexandria, actually the first church of any denomination in the city.
In 1895, Reverend Leonard Menard envisioned a larger place of worship. The cornerstone of the present cathedral building was laid on December 3, 1895, the feast day of St. Francis Xavier. A few weeks later, on December 30, 1895, the original church on Front Street burned.
Today, St. Francis Xavier Cathedral still boasts some of the most beautiful stained-glass windows in the state of Louisiana. The rose windows in the apex of the transept are the largest in the state, and the main altar is hand-carved walnut.
The St. Francis Xavier Catholic Cathedral complex includes the cathedral building itself, located at 626 Fourth Street, St. Francis Academy (erected in 1897), and the rectory.
River Oaks Square Art Center
River Oaks is a visual arts and crafts center located in the Bolton House (circa 1899) and a newer studio annex building.
It is home to more than 30 resident artists with a combination of activities including workshops, lectures, exhibitions, and special events.
Visitors also have the opportunity to visit with the artists as they work. The Arts Center is located at 1330 Second Street in downtown Alexandria. Admission is free. Phone 318.473.2670 for additional information.
Alexandria-Pineville & CenLA Attractions and Things to Do