Lafayette is a city in southern Louisiana, the seat of government for Lafayette Parish, located on the Vermilion River. It is particularly known for its petroleum industry, Cajun cooking and music, and friendly people.
The fourth largest city in the state, Lafayette had a 2015 census population estimate of 127,657. However, if the unincorporated Metairie and Metairie Terrace in Jefferson Parish are included in the state rankings, Lafayette falls to sixth place, still comfortably ahead of its regional sister city of Lake Charles. Lafayette is called a "Hub City" because its extended area of commerce reaches to Opelousas and Morgan City, with a combined population of 627,146 in 2015.
It has a full university, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, originally known as Southwestern Louisiana Industrial Institute.
Lafayette has in recent yeas been a stronghold for most Republican political candidates though it voted in 2003 for Kathleen Blanco, the successful Democratic gubernatorial nominee and a resident of Lafayette.
- Jean-Paul Coussan, current state representative for District 45
- Charles and Virginia de Gravelles, Republican politicians
- Kevin Faulk, running back for the New England Patriots
- Bobby John, businessman, co-founder of J&J Exterminating Company
- John L. Loos, Louisiana State University historian; retired to Lafayette
- Hall M. Lyons, businessman and politician
- Roderick Miller, former state representative
- Kaliste Saloom, Jr., Lafayette city judge from 1953 to 1993
- Gus Weill, political consultant and author