Feb 082013
 

Craig Giesecke

Now that the Super Bowl has passed and the temporary Disneyfication of our city has been taken down, we’re back to the normal seasonal crazy through Fat Tuesday next week. In our household, it means even more than in most years because we’ll have family staying with us through the entire time. By “family,” I mean my daughter and her boyfriend and a childhood friend of my daughter, so it’ll be a bon temp indeed around here. Continue reading »

Feb 072013
 

The Krewe of Muses debuted their new “Sirens” float on the Uptown route Thursday evening. (Sabree Hill, UptownMessenger.com)

The massive crowds that lined the Uptown route Thursday night saw the Knights of Babylon explore the “Land of Dreams,” the Knights of Chaos skewer politicians of every stripe, and the Krewe of Muses combine visual theatrics with a witty series of puns on “Makin’ Groceries.”

The Knights of Babylon’s “Jesters” float rolls up Napoleon Avenue. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

The Chaos “Scallywag” float took advantage of former Mayor Ray Nagin’s legal woes. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

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Feb 072013
 

Allan Katz and Danae Columbus

Danae’s Mardi Gras is not complete without the annual trek to Gallier Hall for the Mayor’s Ball. Lucky for us, Gallier Hall is only four blocks from our office, so Danae walks over.

Last night’s event — as usual — was an outstanding gathering, a great place to people watch and do business. His Honor of course was present along with most of his senior staff and the majority of the City Council — LaToya, Cynthia, Jackie, Kristin and Susan — and their husbands. Danae overheard Mayor Landrieu speaking to a national journalist about the willingness of investors to bring their money to New Orleans, since the Mayor never misses an opportunity to promote the city. Honorary Dutch Consul Connie Willems, new president of the Consular Corp, was talking about how foreign governments are placing more emphasis on trade in this region. Continue reading »

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Feb 062013
 

The Mystic Krewe of Nyx Captain’s float rolls on Magazine Street on Wednesday evening. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

The Krewe of Ancient Druids “Consultant” float turns onto Magazine Street on Wednesday evening. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

The Krewe of Ancient Druids teased a number of other parade groups with its “Phobias” theme and the Mystic Krewe of Nyx reveled in cinematic takes on “What a Girl Wants” Wednesday night, as Carnival parading on the Uptown New Orleans route resumed after its week off. Continue reading »

Feb 062013
 

Someone staking a false claim to the neutral ground in the 2300 block of Napoleon on Mardi Gras Day 2011. (photo by Jean-Paul Villere for UptownMessenger.com)

Jean-Paul Villere

Greetings 2013 Carnival enthusiasts!  The season is upon us, and in the past I’ve written some dos and don’ts in the form of top tens, a course of 101 and 201, to ensure a safe, happy, and mutually beneficial Mardi Gras experience.  Black outs be damned!  We have Flambeaux!  Come to think of it, in 2018, having Flambeaux on standby to illuminate the game wouldn’t be the worst idea.  Anyhow, enjoy the recap to follow, and for goodness sake’s take it to heart.

(1) Don’t park your car on the neutral ground.  It may not be signed and everyone else may be doing it, but you – and they – will all get tickets.  I see it every year.  And no matter how designated your driver is, not a one of you should be behind the wheel.  Ride your bike, people! Continue reading »

Feb 062013
 

A vacant lot on the corner of Amelia and Baronne where neighbors say unruly teenagers congregate during Mardi Gras parades. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

A two-block stretch of Amelia Street that neighbors say has become an out-of-control gathering place for unruly teenagers during Mardi Gras will receive increased attention this week from both police and city officials who promise to end the problem.

The problem is different from the typical Carnival-time revelry that lines the Uptown route, neighbors and officials say. Instead, a vacant lot at the corner of Baronne Street — memorable to passers-by for a lone set of stone stairs in the center of it — has become a gathering point for teens, and they form a dense throng for two blocks between there and the parade on St. Charles Avenue. Continue reading »

Feb 042013
 

Carlos C. Williams (via opcso.org)

New Orleans police made 17 gun arrests along the parade route the first weekend of Mardi Gras (including three cases the first Friday and four more the following Saturday and Sunday), a slight increase in the number during the first weekend of 2010 and 2011, according to a report by Maya Rodriguez of our partners at WWL-TV. One of the men arrested Saturday night on the Uptown stretch of St. Charles Avenue, 22-year-old Carlos C. Williams, has already pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge and received a six-month jail sentence, WWL reports:

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Jan 272013
 

The Knights of King Arthur’s Queen Guinevere, Pam Dean Goodard, smiles as she prepares throw a toy football into the Napoleon Avenue crowd. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

The Krewe of Carrollton and Knights of King Arthur rolled Sunday afternoon on the Uptown route.

A member of the Krewe of Carrollton on the “Day at the Jazzfest” float tosses beads into the St. Charles Avenue crowd. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

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Jan 262013
 

A rider on the Knights of Sparta “Moonlight Serenade” float singles out a parade-goer to catch a throw. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

The Knights of Sparta rolled on the Uptown route with 17 floats themed “My Way,” after Sinatra songs, and the Krewe of Pygmalion rolled an 18-float parade entitled “Pygmalion Celebrates.”

The Pygmammoth float, which debuted in 2012, makes its second appearance in the Krewe of Pygmalion parade on St. Charles Avenue. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

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Jan 262013
 

Horseback riders lead the Krewe of Choctaw up St. Charles Avenue. (Sabree Hill, UptownMessenger.com)

The Krewe of Pontchartrain’s 15 floats riddled parade-goers with the theme of “What are you afraid of?” on Saturday afternoon, and the Krewe of Choctaw made its first appearance on the Uptown route with a 18-float parade with whimsical takes on “Avenues of America.”

The Krewe of Pontchartrain’s floats asked parade-goers, “What are you afraid of?” (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

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Jan 252013
 

Queen Oshun XVI, Taisha Williams-Payne, rides up Napoleon Avenue on Friday evening. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Under absolutely perfect weather, two regal parades kicked off the first major weekend of parading in New Orleans on Friday night. The Krewe of Oshun celebrated children as it held its place as the first parade of the weekend, and the Krewe of Cleopatra made their debut on the Uptown route on the fortieth anniversary of their parade.

Queen Cleopatra XL, Malinda Phillips Bertrand, smiles from her throne as her float rolls up Napoleon Avenue. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

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Jan 232013
 

Jean-Paul Villere

Skipping for now over the Big Game hoo-ha that’s about to consume our nation’s attention (and glossing over the ample high dollar unlicensed daily rental scofflaws at the local level), I recently gave a glance to the proposed parade routes for this Carnival and raised my right eyebrow.  The traditional upper Napoleon route (read: where Rex rolls) is apparently still going to remain in effect this season despite the massive sandbox it has become a la a Michael Bay movie.  With all the chainlink, piledriving, construction equipment, and urban setting to me it looks like what I would imagine any given day shooting Transformers 4 would look like.  (I’m looking around for Mr. LeBouef but quickly remember Mr. Wahlberg will be assuming the lead in this next excursion into pseudo-future robotic mayhem, which in and of itself is funny because the theme song to the original cartoon film released in the theater in the 80s, which I saw in said theater BTW, was covered by Marky Mark when he starred in Boogie Nights.  Digressive nerdgasm accomplished.) Continue reading »

Jan 222013
 

Members of the Jewish Community Relations Council carry a sign quoting Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.. — “I have a dream” — during Monday’s parade through Central City. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

A parade honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. passed up the Central City boulevard named in his memory on Monday, with community and school groups from around New Orleans marching in support of his legacy.

Supporters of Project Ceasefire carry banners in Monday’s Martin Luther King Day parade. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

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