Category Archives: Carnival

Living in New Orleans – the first 10 years

My family is from Louisiana for generations on both sides but I didn’t move to New Orleans until late 2009. I’d lived in Maryland, Japan, Washington D.C., Alabama, New York, and almost 18 years in Los Angeles before finally following my heart home. Looking through photos for this blog post, I saw the story of a New Dat becoming a Saints season-ticket-holding Who Dat, a parade-goer becoming a Pussyfooters parade dancer, strangers becoming friends, and a blogger becoming an author. I saw the evolution of my love story with this city, and with the man I met my first year here.

I’d just produced Hell Ride with Quentin Tarantino when I decided to leave Los Angeles. Continue reading

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Filed under Carnival, Culture, decorations and costumes, entertainment industry, free events and lagniappe, Local Cuisine, Mardi Gras 2010, Mardi Gras 2015, Mardi Gras 2016, Mardi Gras 2017, Mardi Gras 2018, Mardi Gras 2019, moving, parade, Pelicans, Super Bowl 2010, the Saints

New Orleans Mystery Books

When I started this blog, I was working on a novel, Lemonade Farm. Ten years later, I’ve finished that novel, an acting book,  Know Small Parts: An Actor’s Guide to Turning Minutes into Moments and Moments ints a Career with foreword by Richard Dreyfuss and endorsements from Kevin Costner, Lou Diamond Phillips and many more – and with the release of The Family Secret: A Charlotte Reade Mystery – I’ve just completed a 5-book series.

The first book of the mysteries-not-murders series begins as the Saints are marching toward their Super Bowl victory during Mardi Gras in 2009-10. As actor/producer Charlotte aids in the search for a birth mother, she comes across a haunted chandelier, and a mystery in her own family’s past. Continue reading

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Filed under Carnival, Concerts, Culture, decorations and costumes, entertainment industry, free events and lagniappe, history, Local Cuisine, Mardi Gras 2013, parade, shopping, Super Bowl 2010, the Saints

How To Birthday in New Orleans

From Sunday second line and Carnival parades to our many festivals and concerts, New Orleans is a city of celebration. If the city can party over everything from tomatoes to our departed, imagine how fun it can be to celebrate yourself here. For me, a New Orleans birthday has to include great company, incredible food, music whenever possible and the occasional “only in New Orleans” event.

Many people start the day by pinning money on their chest. Continue reading

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St. Patrick’s Parades 2019

The month of Carnival parades just ended on the 5th but we were back in the streets again ALL weekend starting with the Molly’s (Jim Monaghan’s) Irish Parade Friday in the French Quarter. The Pussyfooters were invited to join in the festivities this year and I love any chance to dance. The weather was awful, cold and rainy, but we were grateful for inclusion in the lively second line.

Saturday, we met family at the Irish Channel St. Patrick’s Day Club‘s Irish Channel Parade. The parade features double-decker floats, dancers and bagpipers but the heart of the Irish Channel parade is the many groups of walkers exchanging silk flowers for kisses (mostly on the cheek). Continue reading

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Fat Tuesday – Costumes!

Mardi Gras (French for Fat Tuesday) splits the city into 2 main groups – parade-goers and costumers. The Krewe of Zulu starts the day of parades, followed by regal Krewe of Rex, then a long procession of truck parades – just floats, no bands or dancers.

We’re costumers so we headed to the Marigny to dive into the wackiness. There were group costumes including many clusters of Ruth Bader Ginsburgs. Trump wall interpretations were also popular. There were even 2 last suppers. The most popular costume was a blind referee or anything related to penalty flags. Continue reading

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Krewes of Proteus & Orpheus Parades 2019

Lundi Gras is all about the floats. Krewe of Proteus, the oldest night parade, was established in 1882 and the last I heard, the majestic floats still sit atop the original wooden chassis. The Krewe of Orpheus floats include lighted favorites like the dragon whose head moves and blows smoke, the super-long locomotive Smokey Mary and the Trojan Horse carrying a live band. But the real showstoppers are the floats covered in vibrant and plentiful flowers flecked with gold.

Orpheus celebrates musicians and performers. This year’s star-studded royalty offered Mario Lopez and Trace Adkins. Krewe co-founder Harry Connick Jr. rode as king along with his wife, Jill Goodacre, in the same float we got to ride in with Quentin Tarantino in 2014. Continue reading

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Krewes of Thoth and Bacchus Parades

I was looking forward to dancing with the Pussyfooters in the Krewe of Thoth parade, but the threat of severe weather led to a slimming of the day’s festivities. The 3 morning parades rolled without marching bands and dance krewes – just floats. Continue reading

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Filed under Carnival, Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, history, Mardi Gras 2019, parade