Dec 202015
 
Police investigate a fatal shooting in 2011 on Monroe Street just outside an elementary school while classes were in session. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Sabree Hill)

Police investigate a fatal shooting in 2011 on Monroe Street just outside an elementary school while classes were in session. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Sabree Hill)

On a Thursday in late November, the entire indomitable city of New Orleans recoiled in shared horror at security video of a young medical student collapsed on the sidewalk just off Magazine Street, clutching his bleeding torso, as a hooded assailant stood over him with a gun aimed at his head. The film’s dreadful silence only amplified the menace as the gunman apparently tried to squeeze the trigger, twice, to finish off his already-incapacitated victim, giving up only when a mechanical mercy intervened and the gun refused to fire.

Two nights later, Bunny Friend park in the Ninth Ward — its almost comically benign name a memorial to a teen who died in an accident in the 1920s — became the scene of the city’s next headline-grabbing gun battle. A block party and planned music-video shoot were rent apart by a hail of gunfire, leaving 17 people wounded, and at least a half dozen people have been named as suspects as investigators try to piece together how the celebration turned to chaos.

The bloodshed continued the following weekend, when more young men’s lives would be claimed around some of the city’s most best-known places: 26-year-old Brandon Robinson killed on Bourbon Street, 19-year-old Richad Dowell on Canal Street and 19-year-old Devin Johnson near the newly opened Lafitte Greenway.

And yet, city officials continue to insist that the struggle against violent crime in New Orleans has made significant strides in recent years, and many measurements as well as newly-published academic studies back them up. But if things are getting better, why does the carnage still insist on making its way onto playgrounds, green spaces and tourist thoroughfares? If the violence is the work of a relatively small group of people, why are they so hard to stop? Continue reading »

Nov 032015
 
The Super Dome’s designated smoking and vaping area during halftime of the Saints-Falcons game on October 15, 2015. (Photo courtesy of Crescent City Vape.)

The Super Dome’s designated smoking and vaping area during halftime of the Saints-Falcons game on October 15, 2015. (Photo courtesy of Crescent City Vape.)

By Brendan Frost

Sean Partridge, the owner of Crescent City Vape on Magazine Street — and my boss at the store — was at the Thursday night Saints-Falcons game when halftime rolled around and he felt like having a vape. Since the New Orleans City Council passed the indoor smoking and vaping ban that took effect on April 22, Saints fans who want to vape must step outside into the designated smoking area that hugs the Super Dome.

“You’re not allowed to leave the stadium and come back,” Sean said. “So you have to go to this area closed off with police barricades. It’s a group of rowdy people packed in shoulder-to-shoulder, and almost every single person is smoking cigarettes.” Continue reading »

Oct 212015
 
6th Annual NAMI Second Line

(via NAMI New Orleans)

 

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is holding a second line in Audubon Park this Saturday, Oct. 24 to raise funds and awareness for mental illness. NAMI will be accepting donations of gently used and new shoes to send to developing nations as well. Continue reading »

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Oct 062015
 
(via Junior League of New Orleans)

(via Junior League of New Orleans)

 

Junior League of New Orleans will begin their Health and Wellness Speaker Series with “Mind, Body, and Spirit”. This event will offer information about meditation and stress management, negotiating skill, and physical fitness. Continue reading »

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Sep 302015
 
(via Junior League of New Orleans)

(via Junior League of New Orleans)

 

The Junior League of New Orleans (JLNO) will host their third annual Freret 5K & Half Mile Fun Run, promoting family fun and fitness in Uptown New Orleans this October. Race day festivities include a 5K run/walk, a half-mile fun run, musical entertainment from the Tulane Jazz Band, post-race refreshments, awards and raffles.

Continue reading »

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Sep 282015
 
Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

There was a time that I got a mild chuckle out of reading the old bumper sticker – New Orleans: Third World and Proud of It. The idea, of course, is that New Orleans is a poor city with inefficient, corrupt government, hence more akin to a developing nation than a prominent American city. Self-deprecating humor and all that.

However, it’s started to hit a bit too close to home lately. Last week we endured yet another “boil water” advisory for the east bank of Orleans Parish in the wake of a brief, 20-minute failure of the plant’s power generation capacity. It was the tenth such advisory in just five years. Continue reading »

Sep 092015
 
Nola BlueDoo Run

(via Tulane Cancer Center)

 

Tulane’s Second Annual NOLA Bluedoo Party/Walk/Run is a 2-mile run that will be held this Saturday, September 12 at Tulane’s campus and will feature “The Young & the Restless” star and Tulane alumnus Christian LeBlanc. Participants are encouraged to costume in blue, the official color of prostate cancer awareness. Continue reading »

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Aug 132015
 
Ballet students rehearse in a studio in the Lyons Center on Monday morning. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Ballet students rehearse in a studio in the Lyons Center on Monday morning. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

The New Orleans Ballet Association, in partnership with NORDC, is leading free and ongoing tai chi, yoga, and dance classes at the Lyons Center through May 2016.  Continue reading »

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Jul 302015
 

By Social Work Students United for Reproductive Freedom at Tulane University

As Social Work students, we are concerned about the deceitful attempt to defund Planned Parenthood, an organization that provides vital health care services to 2.7 million Americans each year. In Louisiana alone, Planned Parenthood annually provides 16,000 visits in both Baton Rouge and New Orleans for services that include birth control, cancer screenings, STD tests and treatment, and other preventative healthcare such as much-needed sexual health education. Continue reading »

Jul 222015
 

By Brendan Valentine, David Brown and Kevin Caldwell

According to Dr. Ken Roy, the passage of Louisiana’s Senate Bill 143 is “a sad day for science, a sad day for medicine and a sad day for the State of Louisiana.” Dr. Roy is concerned that it isn’t currently feasible to expect physicians to prescribe a Schedule I substance, due to FDA regulations. He also strongly implies that there are no legitimate therapeutic uses for marijuana in a natural form. Continue reading »

Jul 212015
 

City Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell listens to a question during a panel discussion in late May at Tulane Hillel. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

City Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell listens to a question during a panel discussion in late May at Tulane Hillel. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Amid statistics showing that mental illness goes untreated at far higher rates in minority populations than among whites, City Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell will host a forum this evening with a panel featuring Coroner Jeffrey Rouse and other experts to discuss ways of finding more ways of addressing the issue before it turns to tragedy. Continue reading »

Jul 032015
 

Dr. Ken Roy

Dr. Ken Roy

By Ken Roy, M.D.

The Louisiana legislature, in its wisdom, passed Senate Bill 143 “Medical Marijuana” in both houses of the legislature, and that bill has now received the signature of the governor. This is a sad day for science, a sad day for medicine and a sad day for the State of Louisiana.

At issue is an end run effort to introduce legal “medical marijuana” into the State of Louisiana without addressing the question of legalization for recreational use. Although government has the right to legalize the recreational use of harmful substances, as with alcohol and tobacco, the current legislation skirts that question and proposes to introduce marijuana for use in a small number of medical conditions. Every time that has happened in other states, the initial legislation has been a “foot in the door,” and subsequent legislation, rules and practice has virtually legalized the recreational use, and massively increased the availability. Continue reading »

Jun 122015
 
The Children's Hospital master plan, with buildings to be saved marked in blue, and new buildings in orange. (via City of New Orleans)

The Children’s Hospital master plan, with buildings to be saved marked in blue, and new buildings in orange. (via City of New Orleans)

The collection of nine former New Orleans Adolescent Hospital buildings acquired by Children’s Hospital will receive landmark protection, but the rest of the 17-acre site will not, a city panel ruled Thursday — effectively allowing the demolition of six dilapidated NOAH buildings in the near future and defining the path ahead for the expansion of Children’s Hospital. Continue reading »

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Jun 052015
 
Residential structures from the former New Orleans Adolescent Hospital along Henry Clay Avenue will be torn down as part of the Children's Hospital expansion. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Residential structures from the former New Orleans Adolescent Hospital along Henry Clay Avenue were approved for demolition as part of the Children’s Hospital expansion. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Children’s Hospital won permission Thursday to tear down six buildings on the former New Orleans Adolescent Hospital campus along Henry Clay Avenue, but has agreed to participate beforehand in a federal process to determine whether their loss can be minimized or mitigated. Continue reading »

Jun 032015
 
An artist's rendition of the expansion of Children's Hospital onto the former New Orleans Adolescent Hospital site. (image by Eskew + Dumez + Ripple architects, courtesy of Children's Hospital)

An artist’s rendition of the expansion of Children’s Hospital onto the former New Orleans Adolescent Hospital site. (image by Eskew + Dumez + Ripple architects, courtesy of Children’s Hospital)

Children’s Hospital faces two key hearings before city officials this week as it prepares to tear down a cluster of dilapidated structures at the edge of the former site of the New Orleans Adolescent Hospital in anticipation of building a new parking garage and clinic space there, and shared more details about the development plans with neighbors on Tuesday night. Continue reading »

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May 052015
 
Children's Hospital's proposed master plan for the redevelopment of the former New Orleans Adolescent Hospital site. (via nola.gov -- click to enlarge)

Children’s Hospital’s proposed master plan for the redevelopment of the former New Orleans Adolescent Hospital site. (via nola.gov — click to enlarge)

City officials gave an initial endorsement Monday to Children’s Hospital’s plan to tear down a handful of long-dilapidated residential structures along the edge of the former New Orleans Adolescent Hospital campus and replace them with a new parking structure intended to unify the two medical campuses into one. Continue reading »