Category Archives: Charity

Satchmo Summerfest 2021

Cancelled last year for the pandemic, Satchmo Summerfest made an abbreviated return with 2 days of music and food celebrating New Orleans native, Louis Armstrong’s birthday. The heat was extraordinary, dangerous even, as The Roots Of Music started things off with a concert outside the Old U.S. Mint, home of the New Orleans Jazz Museum where you can find Armstrong’s first coronet. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Charity, Concerts, Culture, festival, Local Cuisine

Floats in the Oaks & the Pussyfooters!

I got to dance in a parade! Sort of. Because of COVID, the city has had to be clever about how to have a parade experience without creating a super spreader event.  New Orleanians have decorated thousands of homes and businesses throughout the city (and the country and even the world!) as “House Floats” to celebrate “Yardi Gras” – a stationary parade. City Park went literal with the concept – lining it’s winding roads with floats from nearly every Krewe that would normally roll so people can drive through the parade – Floats in the Oaks.

The Pussyfooters, a dance krewe of over 100 women over-30, have been invited to join for both weeks of Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Other dancers and bands will be appearing as well throughout the 2-week schedule. Thursday was opening night and I was pretty excited to finally be putting on my pink wig and corset. Continue reading

3 Comments

Filed under Carnival, Charity, Culture, decorations and costumes, Mardi Gras 2021, parade, Uncategorized

Mardi Gras 2021

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Mardi Gras will be unrecognizable this year. Most parades have been cancelled. A few have regrouped, creating drive-thru parades. The dancers, bands, and krewe members throwing beads and masks “parade” on either side of a road as parade-goers in cars pass. With no parades, people are taking their house-blinging to the next level this year. Krewe of House Floats, a grassroots effort to give neighbors a safe, socially distanced parade experience, encourages people to use local businesses and artists to help decorate their homes as house floats. I’ve already seen 3 homes done as floats and they totally brightened my days (PHOTOS below).

Continue reading

11 Comments

Filed under Carnival, Charity, Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, Local Cuisine, Mardi Gras 2010, Mardi Gras 2021, parade

Krewes of Thoth & Bacchus Parades

After a weather rescheduling cancelled the bands and dancers from the Krewe of Muses parade, I couldn’t wait to dance with the Pussyfooters in the Krewe of Thoth parade. But Carnival had turned tragic again Saturday night with the second tandem-float-related death. To be honest, it was an odd day. I was grateful to be spending it with my pink-corseted sisters bringing smiles to thick crowds.

Founded in 1947, the Krewe of Thoth has a unique Uptown route designed to pass hospitals and other care facilities people have trouble leaving for a parade. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Carnival, Charity, Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, history, Mardi Gras 2020, parade, Uncategorized

Festigals Step Up Parade

The Festigals Step Up Parade is the city’s largest women’s second-line parade. The parade is part of the Festigals weekend gathering of women creating opportunities for networking, education, fundraising and, of course,  New Orleanian fun. A fundraising event, this year’s stroll raised thousands for the New Orleans Area American Heart Association.

Festigals was my first parade as a Pussyfooter 7 years ago Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Charity, Culture, decorations and costumes, festival, free events and lagniappe, parade

Irma Thomas at Wednesday at the Square

This is my 10th year enjoying the  Young Leadership Council‘s  Wednesday at the Square music series in Lafayette Square. We’re so spoiled for music here that I’ve had the pleasure of seeing Grammy-winner  Irma Thomas perform dozens of times. We got a bunch of yummy food from the booths and hung out with friends while the “The Soul Queen of New Orleans” took the stage with her band, The Professionals . Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Charity, Concerts, Culture, festival, free events and lagniappe

Rebirth at Maple Leaf

There are New Orleans traditions that belong mostly to our visitors (Bourbon Street) and those that belong uniquely to locals, but there are a few traditions we all share. We all eat beignets, we all love Mardi Gras (though often for different reasons) and we all love the Tuesday night tradition of Rebirth Brass Band playing the Maple Leaf. Rebirth is the first brass band to ever win a Grammy. The world has heard them in many soundtracks dating back to Reginald Hudlin’s Boomerang starring Eddie Murphy in 1992. Last years’s hit Girls Trip included the band’s original, Do Watcha Wanna – practically a city anthem.

I’d been to the Maple Leaf in the 90’s during a location scout for a film and not much has changed. The service was fantastic – a winning balance of fast and friendly. Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under Charity, Concerts, Culture, history, Local Cuisine, the Saints

Festigals Parade

Festigals is a weekend gathering of women for networking, education, fundraising and New Orleanian fun. Their STEP UP to stop domestic violence parade (formerly the Stiletto Stroll) is the city’s largest women’s second-line parade. Festigals was my first parade as a Pussyfooter Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Carnival, Charity, Culture, decorations and costumes, festival, free events and lagniappe, parade

Gay Pride Parade 2018

After ending food and music at the Creole Tomato Fest and the fun spectacle of the Naked Bike Parade, we were primed for the Gay Pride Parade. Bigger and longer every year, the parade includes LGBTQ groups, community organizations, churches and more. Dance and walking krewes included Roux La La, Sirens, High Quality, Krewe des Fleur, Krewe of Goddesses, Crescent City Fae, AUX, NOLA Cherry Bombs, Disco Amigos and the Krewe of the Rolling Elvi. I worked up a sweat dancing when One Shot Brass Band got stuck on from of us for a while. I also spotted singing, fiddling spitfire, Amanda Shaw, and the always moving Dancing Man 504.

There were over 20 parade floats as well as drag queens and walking groups Continue reading

4 Comments

Filed under Charity, Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, parade

The Who Dat Nation Wins

Sure, the Saints lost the playoff game against the Vikings last Sunday, but winning rarely teaches us about the character of a person, a team or a place. Most of us don’t really know who or what we are until we’re faced with failure. As an actor, my life has been nearly defined by rejection. My life credo has long been “Dare To Fail.” Maybe that’s why being a Saints fan has come so easy to me. So, the Saints lost in the last millisecond of the game and, of course, we’re all disappointed. But Saints fans can turn any loss into a win.

Though I have roots reaching back centuries in this city, I didn’t move here until 2009 as the Saints were heading to their amazing Super Bowl victory. That made me more of a “New Dat” than a Who Dat. But I watched every game in bars throughout the city, Continue reading

6 Comments

Filed under Charity, Culture, decorations and costumes, parade, Super Bowl 2010, the Saints