Heart of Louisiana: The Twin Steeples of Ponchatoula
NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - These two old churches with their twin steeples are among the oldest wooden structures in the southeastern Louisiana city of Ponchatoula. But after sitting mostly unused for decades, the buildings have been transformed into a new creative arts center.
Ponchatoula artist and philanthropist, the late Harry Gabriel, came up with the idea for turning the old Lutheran and Presbyterian churches into an arts center. “His vision was to have a place that would not censor anything that musicians and artists wanted to do,” explains Kim Zabbia, president of the Twin Steeples Creative Arts Center. Gabriel purchased the vacant Lutheran Church building. The nearby Presbyterian Church was donated to the arts group for one dollar. “It seems like we have an extraordinarily large population of artistic type people,” said Presbyterian Pastor Aaron Gordon. He added, “It seems like it’s very important for bolstering arts in the community.”
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