An Afternoon on Florida Road
Mom's Country Kitchen, Sleepy Hollow and more

Roller rink, Barq's plant, and more



I originally spotted Leo's Roller Rink on North a few months ago to my delight, but then found this website for a Leo's rink, called it to hear a human answer, and mistakenly thought the one pictured here was still open despite all appearances. Turns out that website was for a different Leo's location, duh.


Someone's been doing a little reading in front of the rink. 


Normally, co-explorer Kara and I draw attention from passerby in our abandoned travels. On this day it was even more so, because we had my dog Addie with us, who was sporting one of those post-operation lampshade collars.

With the help of Addie, we made a few acquaintances that day, who evidence suggested might have been crack cocaine- smoking Americans.


One of our new acquaintances emerged into the daylight from this place.


He was in high spirits, and trying to remind us about that one show on TV with the dog that was like "Ooooo." We pretended to know what he was talking about. Addie, our guard dog, went up to him wagging and gave a friendly punch in the crotch, since she's perfect height for doing that to most people, but this guy didn't mind one bit.

Here, the former (presumably former) Way of the Cross.






Next door to the crumbling church, a mass grave of real-estate signs.



This property was a graveyard for other commercial signs as well.




It was also the site of a romantic encounter, judging by these ossified oyster shells.


Finally, a former plant for Barq's root beer.


According to Wikipedia (so it must be right), Barq's Brothers Bottling Company originated in New Orleans in 1890 and also had plants in Baton Rouge.


You can see one of the tanks in the upper left window above. This could be a site for a microbrewery today. (I want a kickback if anyone does this.)


But this view below is what gave away the building's identity.


The Barq's slogan was simple back then.



Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


They were right - Barq's IS good!

joey mabile

Good finds, my friend. I really like the second pic of the outside structure of the roller rink. Your site is super cool. Before happening upon it, I thought I was the only one who found this stuff so interesting. Keep up the good work!


Some of these pics would look amazing blown up and framed. Like the white doors with the orange backround and my favorite one, the one with tons of bricks.


As soon as I saw Leo, I thought of Leo from Twin Peaks. Leo as a roller rink owner. I'd like to see that Twin Peak spin-off.


I think that Barq's® may be worse than Addie's bite.


And now I want to Roller Boogie.

mimi wilson

how do i find out who owns these buildings and if they can be bought or leased. WE are looking for an old building to restore and make a business with.


Elizabeth, agreed.

Joey M, welcome, and thank you!

Jules, maybe I should look into that.

kartek, I think about Twin Peaks here pretty much every day.

Lioux, you get most clever commenter award, in this fine awards seaon.

Mimi, Many of these buildings have "for rent" signs out front. Let me know if you need the location of any specific building.

chris damico

I'd love to know the address of the old Barq's plant. That tank might mean there are more tanks up there. You will assuredly get a cut (in beer?) if a microbrewery is started there.


Chris, I'll take you up on that cut! it's on North St. if you head east to I believe right before it ends in a residential area. It's the North that's North of Fla and parallel to it, not the one South of it, not sure if it's Avenue/St/etc.


Hey everyone, just wanted to say i love the blog. I love riding through these older areas of BR and seeing the past before me.

If anyone is interested, I have a Baton Rouge restaurant review blog called Eat Rouge that I think you might in enjoy. Check it out at


Great shots! I particularly like the church photos.


I used to go to Leo's when it was open. Had great times there as a kid. The city's population is moving south and north leaving all this behind.


I'm trying to find pictures of Leo's from the 50's. My parents met there and are now celebrating their 50th anniversary. I'm attempting to make a slide show of their life and have come to a dead end when it comes to Leo's. My mom also use to tell me about hanging out in a place called 'Hoppers.' If that rings a bell for anyone, please let me know.



Try getting IN Leo's, that's where the interesting stuff is. I won't say how I know that, but there's interesting stuff -and people- inside. Including a toilet - used for its purpose but obviously not attached to plumbing. Yeah, 10,000 kinds of gross.

And I'm pretty sure "Hoppers" was a milkshake like place, where Ruby Tuesdays is in Cortana if memory serves me correctly. They took pride in their milkshakes that were so thick you could flip it upside down and it wouldn't spill out!


Leo's used to be THE place for kids' birthday parties in the 1960s. Back then, the skates had wooden wheels, and corny organ music was played while everyone skated around. One of the best ways to fall and nearly kill yourself was when the mandatory "doing the Hokey Pokey on your rollerskates" would start.

David Norman

Leo Seaman is my grandfather on my fathers side (Les). Leo passed away in 1993 after an injury sustained from falling off the roof of the new rink on Airways (near Cortana Mall). His wife Nimbo, passed away last year (2008) at the age of 79. Leo's children, Les, Perry, Anne, Brad and Todd, continue to run the newer rink's (Ice & Roller) to this day. Nice pictures, a piece of Baton Rouge history.

Abandon Motels Of Louisiana

Where is Leo Roller and Barqs plant located in Baton Rouge?

Abandon Motels Of Louisiana


Steve Perry

Hopper's was a drive-in burger 'n' shake place. Think American Graffiti. There were three locations: First one was on Scenic Hwy, near the Plant; second one was on Florida Blvd. -- not that far away from Leo's. Third one was on Airline Hwy, near the Plank Road interchange. Busiest places in town on Friday and Saturday nights in the mid-1960's.

Once you started drinking beer, you could go to Rock's Drive In, which was on Nicholson or Highland Road, out toward LSU.

free dental care

the plants are very important to us all, in them we find from medicines and food up production, is a resource that should take care because otherwise it would be at Risk!


I loved reading all of this! Leo's was a big hit when I grew up in the late 60's!


Not sure when hoppers closed ... I'm 23 & I remember my mom taking me there @ maybe 6 ?? I do remember it being pretty run down


Awesome pics of the old Leo's Roller Rink. I was born in 1970, so I naturally went to many schoolmate's b-day skate-parties there:) Fun Fair Park was another popular party destination. I remember when the two "new" rinks (ice + roller) opened at Cortana, and they became much more popular. The last time I went to the old Leo's was in 1986 (or so) to see Rollins Band. It was an interesting show - Henry Rollins playing in the middle of the rink, with most of the lights off, and everyone just gathered all around the band. Thanks for risking your life to get those photos - seriously, it's really dangerous around there now, so be careful!
Melanie E.


The Barq's building is on the corner of North St. and 49th...the actual address is 535 North 49th

jim bruce

what is the building address that had the TOUPS sign laying down by the tree?

Amber St Romain

Does anyone know if Skate City Is still there? Back in 1974 I think I use to go to Leos rink. I lived in Park Forest Subdivsion. The best skate rink was Skate City.


I was born in 1992 and I had my birthday party at Leos lol. Its so sad to see Baton Rouge in this state of decay, with the virus going around its just going to get even worst.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)