Angola, Louisiana: Prison Museum and RodeoThe museum has a real electric chair and a display of cell-made weapons. The rodeo is held twice each year -- one of the few remaining prison rodeos in the nation. Convict cowboys, yee-hah!
Louisiana State Penitentiary Museum
- Hwy 66, Angola, LA
- Louisiana State Penitentiary Museum. I-110 exit onto US Hwy 61. Drive north around 20 miles, then exit northwest onto Hwy 66 (Tunica Trace). Another 20 miles to the prison.
- Tu-F 8 am - 4:30 pm, Sa 9 am - 5 pm. Rodeo - Su in Oct. (Call to verify)
- RA Rates:
- Major Fun
Visitor Tips and News About Prison Museum and Rodeo
Angola Prison Rodeo - So worth it![Zannah Noe, 04/24/2012]
Chills and thrills (some spills) Sundays in October as inmates at Angola try for the coveted belt buckle. It's their chance for a redemption of sorts as they face wild bulls and bucking broncs in front of a crowd of ten thousand spectators.
The rodeo is a celebration of the best side of human nature and the spirit is contagious. Home cooking, crafts and several live bands round out the experience of the "wildest show in the South." Best ten dollars you will ever spend.[Ellen Bain Smith, 11/26/2006]
The Prison Museum is free and is located just outside the gates of the prison. It features an electric chair, a model cell you can enter, photos/stories of famous escapes, some really gory photos of prison murders, and a frightening array of homemade prison weapons confiscated over the years, including a shotgun made up of pipes that were part of a construction project.
Also caught the Angola Prison Rodeo, held every Sunday in October (as well as one Sunday in April). The rodeo is inside Angola's 18,000 acres and features some unusual events, such as convict poker (4 inmates seated around a card table in middle of the ring holding cards while angry bull is released - last to get up wins), and Guts & Glory, where a poker chip is placed on the forehead of a bull -- cash goes to the inmate who can get it (there are at least 20 inmates in the ring trying to chase down/avoid the bull).[Keith Pilkey, 11/18/2001]
Louisiana's decomissioned electric chair, "Old Sparky" (1941-61, 67 executions) is on display. Also some interesting artifacts from escapes, such as a compressor tank from the back of a truck -- two convicts cut into it and hid inside.
The Angola Prison Rodeo, Angola, LA, now in its 36th year, is a well-known yearly event staffed by inmates from a facility housing the state's most violent criminals. Prisoners show off their steely nerve with a hand of "Convict Poker," when four jailbirds sit around a card table playing a hand while a bull charges and attempts to gore them.... [10/22/2000] Complete News Story
When visiting Louisiana during the peak October weather, don't miss the Angola Prison Rodeo. For the last 30 years incarcerated amateurs have been riding bulls, milking wild cows, wrangling calves and all manner of derring-do on the grounds of the maximum security Louisiana State Penitentiary. The rodeo is held every sunday in October at 2:00 P.M. -- Go early to buy your ticket as it sells out fast, and browse the tables of prison art and hobbycrafts for sale and treat yourself to some good Louisiana cookin'.[John Morse, 11/18/1999]