Last week, Randol's Cajun Restaurant in Lafayette announced they were closing their doors after 50 years of business.

For five decades, the iconic eatery was one of the biggest symbols of our Cajun culture. It was a place where you could enjoy some of the best Cajun cuisine while listening to some of the best Cajun musicians while they entertained customers and provided a musical backdrop to those who wanted to get out on the restaurant's dance floor and work off all that food!

As a child, I remember spending many afternoons at my grandfather's house watching many of these musicians play on local TV. As an adult, one of the first places I took my in-laws - who are from north Louisiana - to give them a true Cajun experience was to Randol's.

With Randol's now closed, which business should replace it?

We decided to ask our listeners this question and we received some interesting answers.

Another Restaurant

Ok, I know this answer does not surprise you. It's the most logical choice to replace a restaurant with a restaurant, right? While I would love to see the return of either of my childhood favorites - Pancho's Mexican Restaurant or Godfather's Pizza - many listeners expressed their desires to see a different Mexican restaurant appear in the iconic location. With locations in Baton Rouge, New Orleans, and Shreveport, many people in Lafayette are yearning for a Superior Bar & Grill. There's quite a bit of speculation about the. restaurant finally coming to Lafayette but, if so, will it be in this location?

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While we are talking about restaurants, other ideas were to bring a Houston's restaurant to the building. There is a Louisiana location in the Crescent City. The New Orleans location is known for serving delicious seafood, steak, and burgers in an atmosphere that is a bit formal.

On the opposite end, one suggestion was a restaurant with a very relaxed environment like Margaritaville. It would be a bit of a challenge to create that beachy, tropical theme at the Randol's location but I'd be willing to give it a try.

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A Comedy Club

Another suggestion was to turn the place into a comedy club. In Houston, Texas, there are numerous comedy clubs that feature some of the best acts across the country. I've been to shows multiple times and the food and fun environment is something that I think Lafayette would welcome. Currently, Lafayette Comedy does feature shows at Club 337 and The Wurst Biergarten. Maybe a new comedy club could take that scene to the next level in the Hub City?

A Dance Hall

This suggestion makes sense considering Randol's already has an iconic dance hall built in. The location could be used as a small concert venue featuring Cajun/Creole musicians, keeping the tradition alive in that building.

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SUNTHARIN PERMPOON
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An Arcade

With all of the child/teenage entertainment venues that have recently come to Lafayette, such as Surge Entertainment Center and Sky Zone Trampoline Park, one suggestion was to bring back something from many of our childhoods - the arcade. Aladdin's Castle in the Acadiana Mall was a favorite hangout of many young people in the 1990's and an arcade featuring some of today's top games, along with the best games of yesteryear, could make for a great hangout today. Imagine an arcade that not only featured these games but also featured laser tag and other fun things catered to this generation. Going to the arcade with my dad and brother was some of the best times I remember from my childhood and, while the world of gaming has certainly changed since then, the right idea could make for another great option for our young people.

Field of Dreams Sports Memorabilia Store in Las Vegas, Facebook via Dwayne A. Jones
Field of Dreams Sports Memorabilia Store in Las Vegas, Facebook via Dwayne A. Jones
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Sports Memorabilia Store

Another interesting suggestion was to turn it into a sports memorabilia store. When I travel to Houston, I love going to Field of Dreams in the Galleria. It's a fantastic sports memorabilia store that is like stepping back into time when you walk in. Locally, Louisiana Hot Stuff has been a great source for UL and LSU apparel and sports memorabilia. A local Field of Dreams store featuring UL and LSU items, as well as other sports memorabilia items, would be something local sports fans could have a lot of fun spending time and money on.

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