It’s been 2 weeks since Hurricane Ida struck the Louisiana shoreline. The Category 4 storm left chunks of Louisiana, including New Orleans, without power before climbing the country spewing tornadoes and mass flooding. Some continue to wait for power but most of the state has been restored. The French Quarter and some other neighborhoods have internet, cable and landline access. The city is slowly coming back but problems persist.
Trash collection has resumed but is spotty at best. Same with the mail. Continue reading
We’ve been without power since Sunday. As I said yesterday, life is very simple now. Breakfast today was cereal with juice. We charged our mobile devices at the neighbor’s porch/local-hangout and swapped rumors about where there might be power, gas or ice. A couple more neighborhoods had power and that kept us all optimistic for a reasonable recovery time.
Today’s hunt was for ice. Continue reading
Though the news has been slow to cover it, you may have heard Louisiana is suffering the worst US flooding since Hurricane Sandy hit the East Coast. This is not Katrina (for too many reasons to list) but it is devastating and it’s not even close to over. Here’s a partial listing of places to make donations of goods and/or money. Reminders from my mom – when donating undergarments, remember that many people need larger sizes and remember to buy hair care for every ethnicity. Continue reading
For me, one of the benefits of working in film and TV is getting to judge contests. So far, I’ve judged a beauty pageant in Mississippi, the Royal Sonesta’s Greasing of the Poles and last year’s gumbo contest at Valero. As much as I enjoy beautiful women, I was thrilled to be asked back to Valero this year. Gumbo, the official dish of Louisiana, is my favorite metaphor for New Orleans – a melting pot where each ingredient added is meant to retain its original flavor. Even the history of the dish is a trip through the many cultures that have come to this city and the traditions they’ve added to our stew. Continue reading
September is Hunger Action Month and what better way to help those in need (1 in 6 households) than to eat, drink and celebrate great local music at Harvest the Music in Lafayette Park! All proceeds go to Second Harvest Food Bank. This week, New Breed Brass Band opened for Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue. New Breed is a brand new brass band of young men born and raised in New Orleans who play originals and covers of traditional NOLA favorites. They may be new to performing onstage but they sounded like pros as they got the crowd moving and primed us for Trombone Shorty’s first stop on his Say That to Say This concert tour. Shorty’s latest album dropped last week and has dominated on the Billboard contemporary jazz chart. Continue reading
Those of us lucky enough to be raised by generations of Louisiana folk have been brought up eating gumbo. Yesterday, I took lucky to another level when I was asked to be a judge at Valero‘s annual fundraising event benefitting several local charities. Valero raised awareness and over a million dollars for organizations like Second Harvest and Special Olympics with their “Valero’s Got Talent” theme. When I arrived, blue-jumpsuited workers were milling around the gumbo tent sampling more than a dozen offerings. I joined judges Joseph Grey of Don’s Seafood and Ryan Gall, Executive Chef at TPC Louisiana as well as Eliza Eugene, who partners with Saints wide receiver Marques Colston (frequently found in the endzone at Saints games) in Eugene Colston Realty. Continue reading
I must confess that I didn’t get out as much in 2012 because Hollywood South is booming and I worked a lot. Even so, here are my 2012 favorites in a nutshell followed by my Favorite Things in NOLA 2011 and Favorite Things in NOLA 2010. Anything named previously in my Favorite Things in NOLA 2011 is marked with an Asterix*.
I have divided the list into categories this year including: Food & Beverage, Music & Entertainment, Culture, Shopping and Giving & More. Continue reading
Filed under Carnival, Charity, Concerts, Culture, decorations and costumes, entertainment industry, festival, free events and lagniappe, history, Local Cuisine, Mardi Gras 2012, parade, shopping, the Saints
The good news is that I’ve been very busy. The bad news is that I’ve missed all of my beloved Harvest the Music Wednesdays. Today was the last one and I was thrilled to finally rejoin the music lovers in suits or tie-dye. I ate Cafe Adelaide‘s Shrimp & Cognac & Goat Cheese Grits ($6) and resisted the dipped strawberries, cupcakes and other treats ($2 – $4) from Bittersweet Confections as well as the plentiful Abita Beer. Food and beverage sales at Harvest the Music benefit one of my favorite non-profits, Second Harvest. Every dollar can feed a family of 4 one meal. Continue reading
I continue to accumulate favorite things about New Orleans, but here’s my second year favorites in a nutshell. Anything named previously in my Favorite Things in NOLA 2010 is marked with an Asterix*. Though there are too many “ties,” revealing an inability to “just pick one,” I promise you there were so many more things I wanted to include, so many more people and places I felt deserved mentioning. Continue reading