I only went to the 45th annual New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival for one day this year and I spent most of that time volunteering in a beer booth – but I still managed to see 11 bands. I didn’t even get to half of the grounds, yet I managed to see artwork by Terrance Osborne and Woodrow Nash, check out Mr. Okra’s truck, hit 2 food booths and visit the WWOZ Brass Pass Tent. I arrived about noon with only 2 hours to spare before work so I headed straight for the Acura Stage to catch some of Johnny Sketch and the Dirty Notes. They delivered their signature funky rock jazz sound along with guests like keyboardist John Gros debuting his French horn skills. Continue reading
Raintree Children and Family Services hosted it’s annual “Paint the Town Green” gala last week benefitting foster children (as well as children with disabilities) and the families who care for them. Big donors were first treated to a Patron Party at Ruth’s Chris Steak House before joining us in the grand Harrah’s Theatre. We milled around checking out auction items before diving into the long buffet provided through the generosity of local restaurants including Arnaud’s with their refreshing Shrimp Remoulade, GW Fins – who again reprised their super-popular subtly flavored Lobster Dumplings and Bread Pudding from the Royal Sonesta’s Desire Oyster Bar.
After a week in Los Angeles, it was good to get back in time for the 4th New Orleans Oyster Festival. I feel a special connection to this fest because I’ve attended every year since its inception. Having made the move to the riverside Woldenberg Park last year (from a ridiculously scorching blacktop parking lot), the fest continues to expand and evolve. The stage was moved to the downtown side of the park and Drago’s super-long line for chargrilled oysters was given its own space away from the other crowded food booths. Continue reading