May 152014
 
City workers remove pieces Thursday morning of a large tree that fell across Short Street near Sycamore during Wednesday evening's wind storms.

City workers remove pieces Thursday morning of a large tree that fell across Short Street near Sycamore during Wednesday evening’s wind storms.

A large tree and several power poles were knocked down on Short Street during Wednesday night’s wind storm in the Carrollton area, but weather officials say it is unclear what exactly caused the tree to fall. Continue reading »

Mar 052014
 
Revelers awaiting Rex on Mardi Gras Day underneath the bus stop at Freret and Napoleon fuel their fire in an effort to keep warm. (Photo by Jean-Paul Villere for UptownMessenger.com)

Revelers awaiting Rex on Mardi Gras Day underneath the bus stop at Freret and Napoleon fuel their fire in an effort to keep warm. (Photo by Jean-Paul Villere for UptownMessenger.com)

Jean-Paul Villere

Jean-Paul Villere

It was the best of Carnivals, it was the worst of Carnivals, it was the time of bare masking, it was the time of warmth sought, it was the suspension of disbelief, it was the veritable cold reality, it was a season of sunscreen, it was a season of wool stockings, it was the glimmer of spring, it was the end of our disparate winter, we had baubles thrown to us, we had rainsoaked remnants, we were heading to heaven, and we were all surely going to hell — in short, the 2014 Mardi Gras season gave us everything and in the end took it all away.  Maybe in a way no one would expect especially given the late date: foiled by the longest, weirdest winter the Big Easy hopefully will ever know and never repeat. Continue reading »

Feb 202014
 

law summit

19th Annual Tulane Summit on Environmental Law & Policy panelist topics (via  the Tulane Environmental and Energy Legal Society)

19th Annual Tulane Summit on Environmental Law & Policy panelist topics (via the Tulane Environmental and Energy Legal Society)

The public is invited to listen to thought-provoking expert panelists discuss environmental hot topics such as the Orleans Parish Levee Board lawsuits, the Gulf of Mexico “dead zone” and the state’s “cancer alley” at the 19th Annual Tulane Summit on Environmental Law & Policy on Friday and Saturday (Feb. 21-22), in Tulane Law School’s Weinmann Hall. Continue reading »

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Jan 302014
 

Allan Katz and Danae Columbus

It probably shouldn’t come as a surprise that an Allan Katz would be fond of four-legged cats.

Allan, the co-author of this column, is host to three inside cats who never leave his house and as many as six orange feral cats who mostly reside in his backyard. The ferals never enter the house. Allan provides food, water and litter boxes inside and outside. It’s a pleasant arrangement except when New Orleans gets one of our rare winter freezes that give weathercasters reason to remind us to bring pets inside. Continue reading »

Jan 292014
 
Mayor Mitch Landrieu and other officials speak about second day of freezing temperatures in New Orleans on Wednesday morning. (via nola.gov)

Mayor Mitch Landrieu and other officials speak about second day of freezing temperatures in New Orleans on Wednesday morning. (via nola.gov)

The worst precipitation of this week’s winter storm may have passed New Orleans with relatively little damage, but dangerous driving conditions will persist as freezing temperatures continue through Thursday morning, officials said.

“This is the word of the day: ice,” said Mayor Mitch Landrieu said. “It’s dangerous.” Continue reading »

Jan 292014
 

Jean-Paul Villere

PREDICTION: Nine months from now the New Orleans metro area will be flush with newborns courtesy one winter storm Leon.  Grumble, groan, no, you say?  Prove me wrong, people, prove me wrong.  With residents’ fave go-to spots for music, grub, and beverages largely on hold paired with a do-not-drive announcement unless vitally important, do the math.  You’re off work, you can’t go anywhere, and there are only so many shows you can binge watch.  And I’m guessing with the masses clamoring for foodstuffs at the nearby grocery, they did not also take time to sweep the birth control from the shelves.  So congrats y’all, it’s a storm baby! Continue reading »

Jan 282014
 

Precipitation forecasts for South Louisiana for 10 p.m. Tuesday (via weather.gov at 12 p.m. Tuesday)

Precipitation forecasts for South Louisiana for 10 p.m. Tuesday (via weather.gov at 12 p.m. Tuesday)

Temperatures in New Orleans are expected to drop below freezing Tuesday afternoon — bringing ice and possibly even snow — and generally remain there until Thursday, likely causing impassable roads and power outages, city officials said in an update on preparations Tuesday morning.

“Don’t let the conditions right now fool you,” said NOPD Superintendent Ronal Serpas in a news conference late Tuesday morning. “Change is definitely coming. Rain, and ice and standing ice are on the way.” Continue reading »

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Jan 282014
 

jewel bush

Standing somewhere in between the Blue Runners and Trappey’s Butter Beans, a woman in Rouses asked me had I heard that wind gusts were supposed to reach 100 mph.

I was in the supermarket, like everyone else, buying provisions for an intended few days spent home due to sleet, freezing rain; and hopefully, snow, but mostly what’s expected to be an icy mess of local roads and bridges.

But I hadn’t heard that. Continue reading »

Jan 282014
 

The City Council District A “pop-up voter forum” planned by the Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center for tonight (Tuesday, Jan. 28) has been canceled, according to the center.

Meanwhile, the District A candidates are still tentatively scheduled to appear in a forum at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday with Carrollton area neighborhood groups at St. Mary’s Dominican High School, in hopes that roads will be passable by then, organizers say.

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Jan 082014
 
The blue tent where people staying under the Pontchartrain Expressway said a woman was found dead Wednesday afternoon. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

The blue tent where people staying under the Pontchartrain Expressway said a woman was found dead Wednesday afternoon. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

A woman was found dead in a tent Wednesday afternoon underneath the Pontchartrain Expressway overpass at the edge of New Orleans’ Central Business District, after a night so cold that area homeless advocates were out trying to get as many people indoors as possible. Continue reading »

Jan 062014
 
Wearing a streetcar tiara, a member of the Phunny Phorty Phellows wishes everyone a "Happy Mardi Gras" before boarding the St. Charles Avenue streetcar on Monday evening. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Wearing a streetcar tiara, a member of the Phunny Phorty Phellows wishes everyone a “Happy Mardi Gras” before boarding the St. Charles Avenue streetcar on Monday evening. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Despite temperatures that dipped below “phreezing,” the Phunny Phorty Phellows made their annual Twelfth Night ride down the St. Charles Avenue streetcar line Monday to mark the end of Christmas and the beginning of the Carnival season. Continue reading »