Tag Archives: Arc of Greater New Orleans

Krewe of Boo 2015

This was my third year dancing with the Pussyfooters in the Krewe of Boo parade. “Chief Spookster” Brian Kern has taken the family legacy to a “greener” level with locally-made throws like Voodoo Doll pins and magnets and Candy Corn necklaces by New Orleans artists, grab bags of plush toys, frisbees and more recycled by Arc of Greater New Orleans and locally-made food items like Pralinettes from Aunt Sally’sChee Wees from Elmer’s Fine Foods and PJ’s Coffee packs. Continue reading

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Filed under Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, Local Cuisine, parade

Dirty Dozen Plays the Square

It was unseasonably cold for YLC’s Wednesday at the Square featuring the legendary Dirty Dozen Brass Band. Even in my knit cap and many layers, I envied the people who thought to wear gloves. Louisiana Spice was onstage playing fun covers of popular radio tunes when I arrived but the first thing I noticed was the new jumbo-screen broadcasting images to the furthest corners of Lafayette Square. Continue reading

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Filed under Charity, Concerts, Culture, festival, free events and lagniappe, history, Local Cuisine

Krewe of Alla

This was my first time seeing the Krewe of Alla parade, the 4th oldest Krewe. This was the first time it rolled the Uptown route having just moved from the West Bank where it’s rolled since the 1930’s. I imagine it was both disappointing for them not to see the same familiar route and faces and also exciting to roll St. Charles and Canal with the big crowds of locals and tourists. Though she was on the opposite side of the Captains float, on the turnaround, I did get to spot Margie Perez, a local musician and the muscle behind Mardi Gras bead recycling at ARC of Greater New Orleans. Continue reading

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Filed under Carnival, Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, history, Mardi Gras 2014, parade

Street Kings and Krewe of Boo Parade

In 2010, Red Bull sponsored a battle of the bands between popular local brass bands – calling it Street Kings. This year, they reprised the contest packing Claiborne Ave under the I-10 overpass. This year’s bands included TBC, New Breed, New Creations and the Original Pinettes – the city’s only all-female brass band. Like most events in New Orleans, there were craft booths, food booths and bars a-plenty. The winning band receives mentorship from Trombone Shorty during 3 days of recording time in the Red Bull Studios. Trombone Shorty also served as one of the judges along with Kermit Ruffins, Walter Ramsey (of the former winners – Stooges Brass Band), WGNO’s Lebron Joseph and Offbeat Magazine’s Jan Ramsey. The event was hosted by the energetic duo of DJ Slab 1 and Glen David Andrews. Continue reading

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

Recycling Mardi Gras Beads at Arc 2013

A couple of years ago, I spent a day sorting Mardi Gras beads at  Arc of Greater New Orleans. Arc  provides services and employment for people of all ages with Intellectual Disabilities (ID). I first became aware of the ID community when I was 5. My 2 year old friend Sarah was born with Down’s Syndrome. She couldn’t walk or talk yet and her tongue was always dry from keeping her mouth perpetually open (mostly for smiling) but she was one of the sweetest people I’d ever met and I loved her. In high school, I was a hugger for the Special Olympics Continue reading

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

Mardi Gras Bead Mural

There’s never a shortage of fun, creative things to do in New Orleans but sometimes you stumble onto something truly special. Stephan Wanger of Galeria Alegria is attempting to beat his own Guinness World Record for largest beaded mural with a 42 foot wide, 8 foot high panorama of the NOLA skyline made almost entirely of recycled Mardi Gras Beads. This eco-friendly artwork is being created with the cooperation of Arc of Greater New Orleans and St. Michael Special School, both of whom collect throws in support of their organizations and employ people with special needs, as well as the Drew Brees affiliated Companies with a Mission Super Service Challenge. Best of all – it’s being created inside Blaine Kern’s Mardi Gras World! Continue reading

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Filed under Carnival, Charity, Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, Mardi Gras 2013, parade