BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – Baton Rouge is Louisiana’s state capital but what else is the city known for?

Baton Rouge is the second-largest city in Louisiana and holds a lot of history. French culture is heavy here, but Baton Rouge was not part of the Louisiana Purchase. Baton Rouge became the state’s capital in 1849 after Louisiana became a state in 1812.

Lots of famous athletes and celebrities were born and played in the city while blockbuster movies were filmed in its bayous and on local college campuses.

Here are some fun facts about the capital city you may not know.

It’s named after a bloody stick

The city’s name translates to “red stick” in French and is rumored after a French explorer saw large poles built up by Indians with fish and bear heads attached to them in sacrifice.

Since its founding, seven different flags, including the Confederate flag, have flown over Baton Rouge.

The country’s tallest state capitol building is here

Louisiana’s State Capitol Building is 450 feet tall and 34 stories high making it the tallest capitol in the United States. It also holds a little dark history. It’s where Huey P. Long, the 40th governor of Louisiana who designed the skyscraper, was assassinated outside the main hall in 1935.

It’s where famous athletes played in college

Baton Rouge is where legendary athletes such as former NBA player Shaquille O’Neal, current NFL Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow, present NFL free agent Odell Beckham Jr. and more played at Louisiana State University.

It’s home to famous artists

Former American Idol judge Randy Jackson is one of many celebrities born in Baton Rouge.

Others include:

  • Actor Shane West from the movie adaption of Nicholas Sparks’ “A Walk to Remember”
  • CNN news personality Don Lemon
  • Rapper NBA Youngboy
  • Rapper Kevin Gates

A U.S. president lived here

Zachary Taylor, the 12th president of the United States, was born in Virginia but moved to the city for cotton raising. He died one year into his term after getting sick.

It’s the most populated city within the state’s most populated parish

East Baton Rouge has the largest population out of Louisiana’s 64 parishes. Currently, there are 456,781 people living within East Baton Rouge Parish and 227,470 of those people reside in the city of Baton Rouge.

It holds one of the longest-running blues festivals in the country

The Baton Rouge Blues Festival is one of many held in the city and is the birthplace of many famous Blues musicians. The 2023 festival is scheduled for April 21-23.

Baton Rouge has grounds older than the city itself

LSU’s campus mounds are believed to have been made about 11,000 years ago and are considered to be the oldest man-man structures in North America. The mounds were created as a meeting place for traveling communities to gather.

It’s where ‘Pitch Perfect’ and Marvel’s ‘Captain Marvel’ were filmed

The campus scenes in the first and second “Pitch Perfect” movies were filmed at LSU. “Captain Marvel” was filmed just outside the city at a plantation house.

Other movies filmed in Baton Rouge include:

  • “Twilight: Breaking Dawn” (2011)
  • “Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 2” (2012)
  • “Beautiful Creatures” (2013)
  • “Interview with a Vampire” (1994)
  • “The Host” (2013)
  • “God’s Not Dead: A Light in Darkness” (2018)
  • “Fantastic 4” (2015)

The last season of “True Blood” was also filmed here.