Gonzales is a small city in Ascension Parish, Louisiana, United States. As of the 2010 census, it had a population of 9,781. Known as the “Jambalaya Capital of the World”, it is famous for its annual Jambalaya Festival, which was first held in 1968. Stephen “Steve” F. Juneau came up with the idea for the Jambalaya Festival and served as the first president of the Jambalaya Festival Association.
Gonzales is located at 30°13′38″N 90°55′11″W / 30.22722°N 90.91972°W / 30.22722; -90.91972 (30.227128, -90.919771).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 8.5 square miles (22.0 km), of which 8.4 square miles (21.7 km) is land and 0.12 square miles (0.3 km), or 1.27%, is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 8,156 people, 2,966 households, and 2,156 families residing in the city. The population density was 974.2 people per square mile (376.2/km²). There were 3,332 housing units at an average density of 398.0 per square mile (153.7/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 65.40% White, 31.25% African American, 0.22% Native American, 0.61% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 1.64% from other races, and 0.86% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.62% of the population.
There were 2,966 households out of which 36.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.6% were married couples living together, 17.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 27.3% were non-families. 23.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.68 and the average family size was 3.18.
In the city, the population was spread out with 27.4% under the age of 18, 10.1% from 18 to 24, 30.0% from 25 to 44, 22.3% from 45 to 64, and 10.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females, there were 91.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.3 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $38,173, and the median income for a family was $43,117. Males had a median income of $38,731 versus $22,168 for females. The per capita income for the city was $17,690. About 14.9% of families and 16.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 23.6% of those under age 18 and 14.5% of those age 65 or over.