May 132016
 
(Google Maps)

(Google Maps)

The site of Belladoggie, the doggie day care and boarding company, will be converted into apartment buildings with one small retail space on the ground floor, according to records filed with the city. Continue reading »

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May 132016
 

The New Orleans Volunteer Orchestra and Voices of New Orleans are hosting their season finale concert this Sunday, May 15 at 7:30 p.m. at St. Charles Avenue Baptist Church.may 15 concertThe concert will include the Bruch Double Concerto in E minor op 88 featuring LPO members-Bruce Owen and Dr. Stephanie Thompson, music from the award winning video game soundtrack “Chrono Trigger”, and selections by Beethhoven, Mendehlssohn and Brahms. Admission is free, and donations are welcomed. Continue reading »

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May 122016
 
(via facebook.com/events/811955958947743/)

(via facebook.com/events/811955958947743/)

Local marketing agency RAPJAB will host Fly Fest 2016 this Saturday, May 14 at The Fly at Audubon Park. The potluck-style event will feature free crawfish and libations while supplies last, as well as a water balloon dodgeball tournament, cocktail competition, and field games. Continue reading »

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May 122016
 
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

Will Mayor Landrieu’s vocal support of a federal takeover at the Orleans Parish Prison be the final encouragement Judge Lance Africk needs to pull the trigger on receivership? Gusman filed his response to the Justice Department’s complaint yesterday which basically said he had not been given enough time or resources to significantly address the many issues at hand.

Under receivership, the federal government will appoint a seasoned correctional official to administer violence and mismanagement issues. Gusman would continue to serve as Sheriff but his hands would basically be tied. Continue reading »

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May 122016
 

Pinkberry New Orleans offers three catering options that bring an unforgettable experience to any business meeting, event, or party. Pinkberry has been a part of the New Orleans community for over six years now and catered all types of events including movie sets, class parties and even weddings! It is completely customizable, just mix and match our light, refreshing yogurts with fresh fruit and premium toppings.

pinkberry caters_upt messenger Continue reading »

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May 102016
 
Oliver Houck, a Tulane University law professor noted for his work on environmental protection, speaks at a meeting of the Audubon Commission on Tuesday evening. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Oliver Houck, a Tulane University law professor noted for his work on environmental protection, speaks at a meeting of the Audubon Commission on Tuesday evening. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Neighbors who frequent Audubon Park expressed two top priorities on Tuesday night — a short-term goal of improving the bathrooms on The Fly, and a long-term goal of creating a community-driven master plan to guide the future of the popular recreation space.

Meanwhile, they also learned the latest plans for the reconstruction of Magazine Street through the area — currently scheduled to begin some time in 2017. Continue reading »

May 102016
 
(map via NOPD)

(map via NOPD)

The U.S. Postal Service is now joining the investigation into the attempted armed robbery of a mail carrier on State Street Drive, New Orleans police said.

Meanwhile, NOPD detectives have determined that the gunman in a robbery just off South Carrollton had previously been involved in a hit-and-run nearby moments before, police said. Continue reading »

May 102016
 

By Chunlin Leonhard

Mr. Robbie Evans, the vice president of the board that governs the Choice Foundation, a three-school charter network in New Orleans, recently urged the Lusher Charter School teachers to vote against their fellow teachers’ efforts to unionize, describing the union as “an impediment to charter schools’ progress.” (The Advocate, Monday, May 9, 2016 p. 1B) He also commented about “union-created deadlock where only ineffective and possibly abusive teachers would benefit,” pointing to the infamous “rubber rooms” associated with New York public schools –“temporary reassignment centers where union-represented teachers accused of misconduct or incompetency have been sent while they await rulings from independent arbitrators.” (Id.)

Mr. Evans’ comments are not only outdated but also completely inapplicable to the unionization efforts at Lusher. Continue reading »

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May 102016
 

The Audubon Commission will host a town hall meeting on Tuesday, May 10 (tonight) to discuss construction on Magazine Street around the zoo and the prioritization of projects at The Fly. The meeting will take place at 6:30 p.m. at the Audubon Tea Room, located at 6500 Magazine Street. Continue reading »

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May 092016
 
NOPD Superintendent Michael Harrison, Commander Doug Eckert and Sgt. Andrew Waldron discuss the May 7 fatal shooting of Thomas Rolfes in a Monday afternoon news conference. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

NOPD Superintendent Michael Harrison, Commander Doug Eckert and Sgt. Andrew Waldron discuss the May 7 fatal shooting of Thomas Rolfes in a Monday afternoon news conference. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

New Orleans police still have a number of unanswered questions about the fatal shooting early Saturday of a Tulane graduate in town scouting wedding locations, but they believe that his death was the result of a robbery, said NOPD Superintendent Michael Harrison.

Thomas Rolfes, 25, was a 2011 graduate of Tulane University who had flown back to New Orleans on Friday for the weekend with his fiancee to scout locations for their wedding, Harrison said at a news conference Monday afternoon. The couple took separate flights, and Rolfes went out drinking with friends after he arrived, while his fiancee opted to go on to bed in their hotel room, Harrison said.

Rolfes is known to have been at Ms. Mae’s bar on Magazine Street earlier in the night, but surveillance video from a gas station on South Claiborne Avenue shows the young man making purchases around 3:30 a.m. Saturday, May 7, Harrison said. About an hour later, his body was discovered on nearby Amelia Street with a fatal gunshot wound to the chest, Harrison said.

Investigators are still trying to determine exactly what went wrong in that unexplained last hour of Rolfes’ life, Harrison said. His hands were injured in ways that suggest a struggle, and his wallet was missing, Harrison said.

“The motive was robbery,” Harrison said. “At some point, the robbery turned deadly.”

Among the unanswered questions that investigators are focusing on is how Rolfes got from the bar on Magazine Street to the gas station on South Claiborne without a vehicle, Harrison said. The surveillance video also shows Rolfes buying two bottles of water, raising the possibility that one of them might have been for someone else with him, Harrison said.

No gunfire was reported in the area between the time of Rolfes’ purchases and the discovery of his body, Harrison said.

“There is a gap in the time about what we know about Point A and Point B,” Harrison said.

While investigators have found “multiple” surveillance videos related to the case, they are asking residents all over Uptown to review their own cameras for anything that might help, says Sgt. Andrew Waldron. Anyone with information is urged to call the NOPD Homicide Division at 658-658-5300 to speak to a detective, or CrimeStoppers at 822-1111 to leave an anonymous tip that could be eligible for a cash reward.

Rolfes is the 40th murder victim recorded in the city of New Orleans this year (as defined by the FBI, which tracks crime statistics). Harrison said that the figure remains down by 33 percent compared to last year, but is still far too high (a city of New Orleans’ size with a “normal” murder rate would have 40 homicides a year) — a point painfully driven home every time he has to meet with the families of murder victims, as he did this morning with Rolfes’ parents and fiancee.

“They are devastated over this tragic incident, and they can’t understand why this happened,” Harrison said. “As the chief, I can tell you that these conversations are never easy. No one should have to go through losing a child.”

To read our live coverage of the news conference, see below:

Live Blog NOPD news conference on South Claiborne homicide – May 9, 2016
 

May 092016
 

JCC logoThe New Orleans Jewish Community Center will celebrate Israel’s 68th Independence Day with a performance of Israel Story – Live at the Yom Ha’atzmaut Celebration on Wednesday, May 11. The event will take place at JCC Uptown location at 5342 St. Charles Avenue. Continue reading »

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May 092016
 
Jill Stein, the Green Party candidate for President, speaks to the party's Louisiana state convention in 2014 in New Orleans. (Photo courtesy of Bruce France, brucefrance.com)

Jill Stein, the Green Party candidate for President, speaks to the party’s Louisiana state convention in 2014 in New Orleans. (Photo courtesy of Bruce France, brucefrance.com)

Two Tuesday primaries ago, after a rash of losses in large states on the Atlantic seaboard prompted the media to pronounce the Bernie Sanders campaign over, presidential candidate Jill Stein of the Green Party took to Twitter to invite Sanders to “build the revolution to last outside the rigged two-party system.”

Around 8 p.m. this past Tuesday, just as Ted Cruz was announcing that he would drop out of the race for the Republican nomination, Google recorded a sudden spike in searches for “Libertarian Party.” And two days later, longtime Republican strategist Mary Matalin made national headlines by announcing that she had changed her registration to Libertarian.

As Democrats and Republicans prepare to nominate two historically unpopular candidates, has the moment finally arrived for these third parties to give Americans another choice?

“Third parties tend to be most successful in times of economic concern,” said Brian Brox of the Tulane University department of political science. “When people are feeling economic dislocation, when they’re feeling economic anxiety, that’s when they’re most open to broader possibilities than just the steady state of Republicans and Democrats.” Continue reading »

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May 092016
 

Carjacking on South Miro; attempted armed robbery on State Street Drive. Not shown: armed robbery on Felicity. (map via NOPD)

Carjacking on South Miro; attempted armed robbery on State Street Drive. Not shown: armed robbery on Felicity. (map via NOPD)

A 17-year-old was carjacked and beaten by two acquaintances in Broadmoor on Friday evening, an armed robbery was reported near Fontainebleau, and a bicyclist was robbed at gunpoint a few hours later in Central City, New Orleans police said. Continue reading »

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May 092016
 
The Gen. P.G.T. Beauregard statue is located on Esplanade Avenue near the entrance of New Orleans City Park (Photo courtesy of James/Flickr).

The Gen. P.G.T. Beauregard statue is located on Esplanade Avenue near the entrance of New Orleans City Park (Photo courtesy of James/Flickr).

Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

I’m not sure that you could ever find two political figures more disparate than Mayor Mitch “Sinkhole” Landrieu and Pierre T. G. Beauregard.

This is not to say that there aren’t similarities. Beauregard, like Landrieu, was born into a wealthy and influential family. However, unlike Landrieu, Beauregard soon established himself independently of his family name. Continue reading »

May 092016
 
(map via NOPD)

(map via NOPD)

A 25-year-old man found with a fatal gunshot wound early Saturday morning near South Claiborne Avenue has been identified as a 2011 graduate of Tulane University who had returned to New Orleans to look for wedding locations, according to New Orleans police and media reports. Continue reading »

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May 092016
 
adultpromlogo

(via Adult Prom NOLA)

Update: The event has been postponed until the summer. For updates, visit Adultpromnola.com.

High Art NOLA will host their annual fundraiser, the Adult Prom Gala, this Saturday, May 14 at Republic, located at 828 S. Peters Street. The ticketed event will include a sponsored bar, DJ set, and live art all night.

Adult Prom will take place from 8 p.m. to midnight on Saturday. High Art NOLA is a 501(c)(3) organization committed to revitalizing neighborhoods with community art gardens and youth leadership programming. All ticket sales will benefit youth arts programs and Annual Winter Formal for terminally ill youth in New Orleans.

Tickets are $50 for general admission, $100 for VIP, and $250 for White Glove VIP. To learn more about the gala and ticket details, visit the event’s webpage here.

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