Mar 312014
 
(images via WWNlive.com)

(images via WWNlive.com)

Yes, WWE Wrestlemania XXX will be taking over the Superdome this weekend. But Uptown New Orleans will also get its dose of pro wrestling action from the World Wrestling Network, featuring six events at Tulane University that include tag-team competitions, female championship wrestling and a monster spectacle called the “Kaiju Big Battel.” Continue reading »

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Mar 142014
 

By Brooke Duncan III

It’s unfortunate that some have taken to social and other media to bash Audubon, one of the truly great success stories of local government in our time. The millage started out at 4.2 but was reduced a few years ago as a result of a state-wide reassessment of property values when values declined following Katrina. Without getting bogged down in semantics, the tax has been in place for a long time and the proposal returns the millage to its prior level. The difference for a home valued at $200,000 has been reported to be around $12 a year. The current taxes will end in 2021-2022. This is an effort to establish the taxes at the former millage; this is not a new tax in addition to the existing tax. Continue reading »

Mar 112014
 
Volunteers plant a tree while children play behind them at Wisner Playground in November 2010.  (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Sabree Hill)

Volunteers plant a tree while children play behind them at Wisner Playground in November 2010. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Sabree Hill)

By Ramsey Green and Sam Winston, members of Friends of Wisner Park

On Saturday, New Orleanians will vote on whether to approve a new 50-year tax increase with all revenue exclusively designated for the Audubon Institute. You should vote “No” – especially if you value having more functional green spaces in the city like the beautiful Audubon Park. Continue reading »

Mar 102014
 

Owen Courreges

Ron Forman makes over $700,000 per year, yet he’s acting like a beggar.  And the worst part is, he’s not even an honest one.

Forman, the president and CEO of the Audubon Nature Institution (and erstwhile mayoral candidate), is seeking a new property tax millage.  It would be of 50 years duration at a rate of 4.2 mills.  Although the new millage would replace the existing 3.31 mills dedicated to the Audubon Zoo and the Aquarium of the Americas, it is not a renewal.  It is a new millage. Continue reading »

Mar 102014
 
(courtesy of The Audubon Nature Institute)

(photo via The Audubon Nature Institute)

On Saturday (March 15), Orleans Parish voters will decide on more than just runoff races for City Council seats. A property tax worth up to $11.9 million a year is up for vote for the Audubon Nature Institute, the organization that supports the Uptown-located Audubon Zoo, as well as the Aquarium downtown and other sites around the city.

Supporters of the millage say it is a renewal of an already-existing tax. But dissenters say that it’s a new tax, because it could mark an increase in funds for the Institute for a period of 50 years. Continue reading »

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Mar 072014
 

Allan Katz and Danae Columbus

For those of us whose memories go back a long ways, one of the all-time great New Orleans stories is the transformation of the Audubon Park Zoo from an “animal ghetto” to a world-class zoo that is considered an American gem.

It all started in the 1970s when then-Mayor Moon Landrieu, irate about complaints that the zoo was a vile-smelling, dirty place where the animals suffered from a lack of care, sent a promising young administrative assistant Ron Forman to the Uptown outpost to see what if anything could be done. Continue reading »

Feb 282014
 
Boys and Girls Hope Race Judicata 2013 (via facebook.com)

Boys and Girls Hope Race Judicata 2013 (via facebook.com)

Bring your family even your dog for a 5k race and one-mile fun run (or walk) at Audubon Park on March 8, and help the Loyola University College of Law raise money for Boys Hope Girls Hope to provide safer environments for at-risk children. Continue reading »

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Feb 282014
 

A rendering of the Tulane Stadium released in September 2012. (UptownMessenger.com file image)

A rendering of the Tulane Stadium released in September 2012. (UptownMessenger.com file image)

When the Tulane Green Wave plays their first football game of the 2014-15 season against Georgia Tech on Sept. 6, they are expected to be doing so on the new Yulman Stadium on the Uptown campus, according to a report by Bradley Handwerger of our partners at WWL-TV.

Feb 132014
 
The SMBC Mime Ministry in Gretna performs during the third annual "Get Yah Praise On" at Audubon Zoo in 2011. (Sabree Hill, UptownMessenger.com)

The SMBC Mime Ministry in Gretna performs during the third annual “Get Yah Praise On” at Audubon Zoo in 2011. (Sabree Hill, UptownMessenger.com)

As part of the city’s “NOLA for Life” initiatives, New Orleans residents can visit the Audubon Zoo for free Saturday — the same day as the zoo’s “Get Yah Praise On” gospel celebration. Continue reading »

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Feb 022014
 
Participants make their way towards downtown on St. Charles ave.

Participants make their way downtown on St. Charles Ave. early Sunday morning (Zach Brien, UptownMessenger.com)

Early Sunday morning, runners took to the foggy streets of New Orleans for the annual Rock N’ Roll Marathon. Beginning at the corner of Poydras St. and Camp St. downtown, the course went Uptown to St. Charles Ave., to Mid City and finished in City Park. Continue reading »

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Jan 292014
 
The Jessie Hiatt Band performs on St. Charles Ave. at Peniston St. as runners pass by during the Rock N' Roll marathon in 2011. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Sabree Hill)

The Jessie Hiatt Band performs on St. Charles Ave. at Peniston St. as runners pass by during the Rock N’ Roll marathon in 2011. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Sabree Hill)

(map via runrocknroll.competitor.com)

(map via runrocknroll.competitor.com)

St. Charles Avenue will host five outdoor music stages Sunday morning to set the pace for runners in the New Orleans Rock N Roll Marathon. Continue reading »

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Jan 122014
 
A group of dogs tussle at the Wisner Dog Run while their owners watch on Sunday, Jan. 5, 2013. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

A group of dogs tussle at the Wisner Dog Run while their owners watch on Sunday, Jan. 5, 2013. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

In December, the city of New Orleans announced the opening of the Wisner Dog Run, the first free, official place for dogs to play without a leash in the city limits, accomplished by a maze of new fencing between the existing Wisner Park softball field, basketball courts and playgrounds that allows pets ample room to romp.

“This is something that people in the neighborhood have been waiting for for a very long time,” said Sam Winston of the Friends of Wisner Park. “People are just thrilled.”

Though Uptown dog owners and neighborhood residents cheer the development, it represents a significant departure from a much more ambitious plan discussed at public forums throughout the city in 2012 for as many as 20 new dog parks and dog runs on vacant land across the city. Instead, city officials are now evaluating new spaces for dogs to get off-leash exercise on a case-by-case basis, and Wisner may represent the new model for the future of how dogs, their owners and other park-goers play together in New Orleans in the future.
Continue reading »

Jan 112014
 
Tyler Johns, left, Shanay Haywood, center, and Rachel May, right, paint "A.L. Davis Panthers" on the outside of A.L. Davis park. (photo by Zach Brien for UptownMessenger.com)

Tyler Johns, left, Shanay Haywood, center, and Rachel May, right, paint “A.L. Davis Panthers” on the outside of A.L. Davis park. (photo by Zach Brien for UptownMessenger.com)

NOLA for Life in A.L. Davis park. (photo by Zach Brien for UptownMessenger.com)

NOLA for Life in A.L. Davis park. (photo by Zach Brien for UptownMessenger.com)

On Saturday in Central City, volunteers, both local and visiting, came out to fix up A.L. Davis Park as well as Carter G. Woodson School as part of the sixth NOLA for Life Day effort. Continue reading »

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Jan 022014
 

Mayor Landrieu shoots baskets in the rebuilt Lyons Center gym at the reopening ceremony in June 2013. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Robert Morris)

Mayor Landrieu shoots baskets in the rebuilt Lyons Center gym at the reopening ceremony in June 2013. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Robert Morris)

Mayor Mitch Landrieu used the Lyons Center — fully renovated and reopened this past summer after languishing since Hurricane Katrina — as a backdrop Thursday morning for a news conference touting New Orleans’ progress in public recreation in 2013. Continue reading »

Nov 062013
 
A sign at Coliseum Park reminds dog owners of laws requiring them to keep their pets leashed and pick up after them. (photo by Jean-Paul Villere for UptownMessenger.com)

A sign at Coliseum Park reminds dog owners of laws requiring them to keep their pets leashed and pick up after them. (photo by Jean-Paul Villere for UptownMessenger.com)

Jean-Paul Villere

I am a cat person, but we remain feline less for the moment.  My oldest developed an allergy recently, and I chose my offspring over my rat decapitator we had had since a wee kitten rescued post-K, all mangy and feral.  Not a tough call, but have you ever been brought a headless rodent with its noggin neatly next to its lifeless body?  It’s impressive.  And repulsive.  And in short, quite a skill.  Her name was Rita (yes, named after the storm – she did have a sister named Katrina who died a few years ago), and like most cats, self sufficient and less than encourageable; such are these creatures.  And therefore and in my experience quite unlike the other preferred domesticated pet: your household dog. Continue reading »

Nov 042013
 
(cartoon by Owen Courreges)

(cartoon by Owen Courreges)

Owen Courreges

The Pelicans have now debuted their physical mascot, appropriately around Halloween and Dia de Los Muertos.  Dubbed “Pierre the Pelican,” his Lovecraftian visage is certain to star in the nightmares of many an impressionable child.

The national media has latched onto Pierre’s horror-inducing appearance with particular gusto.  USA Today’s sports page labeled him “completely and utterly terrifying.”  Deadspin opined that Pierre is “perfectly armed to terrify,” describing his massive mouth as “the portal for your soul’s devourment.”  There was even speculation that perhaps Pierre was just a Halloween ploy. Continue reading »

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