May 072013

Residents and school officials examine the yard behind the McDonogh 7 school building where temporary structures are planned for next year, when Audubon Charter is slated to move in. (Robert Morris,

Residents and officials gather in front of the McDonogh 7 building. (Robert Morris,

With Audubon Charter School slated to move out of its crumbling Carrollton courthouse and into the McDonogh 7 building on Milan Street next year, school officials held their first meeting Monday night with their new neighbors. Continue reading »

May 072013

The grass situation at Behrman Park last summer, July 11, 2012. (photo by jewel bush)

jewel bush

Last summer, my son played baseball for a park run by NORDC, the New Orleans Recreation Development Commission, the dramatic voter-approved overhaul of which was supposed to be one of Mayor Landrieu’s first major accomplishments.

For months, his team practiced on a sliver of grass not on a baseball diamond. Although one game was played at Norman Playground, the rest were scheduled at Behrman Park — also on the Westbank — because we were told it was the only facility in NORDC that had operating field lights. There was only one bench for two dugouts to share. The team that arrived first claimed the bench leaving the other players to sit on the concrete slab or in the bleachers among the throngs of Little League supporters.

The coach collected a modest sum from each participant to purchase uniforms. He never delivered the shirts and visors nor returned the cash. Continue reading »

May 062013

State Rep. Neil Abramson, left, speaks during a public meeting about the expansion of Children’s Hospital onto the former New Orleans Adolescent Hospital property. (Robert Morris,

State law requires that the former New Orleans Adolescent Hospital site only be used for health-care purposes after Children’s Hospital buys it, lawmakers said at a public meeting Monday night. Meanwhile, the expansion of mental-health services at the former DePaul Hospital site on Calhoun street will no new construction, hospital officials said. Continue reading »

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May 032013

Computer sketch (via NOPD)

The honest taxi drivers of New Orleans should turn in one of their peers who sexually assaulted a woman he was driving through the east Carrollton area early Thursday, so that their profession’s reputation does not suffer from his misdeeds, NOPD Superintendent Ronal Serpas said Friday afternoon.

“Cab drivers are good, professional, hardworking people,” Serpas said at a mid-afternoon news conference. “You know who this guy is. You know who he is. Tell him to turn himself in; we’re coming to get him.” Continue reading »

May 032013

The monthly Freret Market is slated to return next Saturday (May 11), with free music from noon to 5 p.m. by the Upstarts, Daria and the Hip Drops, and Sunpie and the Louisiana Sunspots plus 90 local vendors with food, art, gifts and pet adoptions, organizers said.

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May 032013

Newman students Catherine Sillars and Jules Vetter act in a scene from “Lend Me a Tenor.” (submitted photo)

The Theatre Department at the Isidore Newman School will continue its production of “Lend Me a Tenor” with shows at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday (May 3-4) in the Henson Auditorium, 5333 Danneel Street. Tickets to the Tony Award-winning two-act comedy are $10 for adults and $5 for students.

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May 032013

The “Drexel Dreamers” — the umbrella group of alumni and supporters of Xavier University Prep — will be holding an enrollment rally all day Friday and until 3 p.m. Saturday to recruit students for Katharanie Drexel Preparatory High School that will succeed Xavier Prep next year. Continue reading »

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May 032013

Craig Giesecke

I’ve unexpectedly had the opportunity lately to spend a lot more time in the French Quarter, since I’ve been helping a friend during JazzFest. This gave me the chance earlier this week to pop into the Louisiana Music Factory to see Beausoleil and Zachary Richard, as well as wander around aimlessly. I think that’s the best way to see the oldest part of our city – without a schedule or plan. Tours are fine to get a sense of how things are laid out, but I also think a completely unstructured day is a lot more fun. Continue reading »

May 022013

Damont Burton (via

Damont Burton, 17, pleaded guilty this week to carjacking in the Oct. 30 robbery of a woman for her SUV, which still had an elderly Chihuahua named Skeeter inside, according to a report by Claire Galofaro of The Times-Picayune. Skeeter was found and returned to his owner a few weeks later.

Burton also pleaded guilty to a charge of armed robbery on Lowerline Street from a few dates after the Skeeter carjacking, Galofaro reports. Carjacking carries a sentence of between two and 20 years; armed robbery carries a sentence of between 10 and 99 years. The robbery charge can also be enhanced by an additional five years when the crime is committed with a firearm.

May 022013

Mireille Rabate, a principal at French American International School in San Francisco, will be invited to New Orleans for an in-person interview May 9 for the CEO job at the Lycée Français de la Nouvelle-Orléans charter school, according to a report from The Lens. Meanwhile, the committee screening candidates accepted four more “last-minute” applications for review and selected two of them for a second interview — Lysianne Essama, a French-immersion principal from Maryland, and J’Vann Martin, a former principal at Capital-One New Beginnings Charter School Network, the report states.

[Update, 12 p.m. Friday] The committee will meet again at 8:45 a.m. Saturday at 1441 Canal Street to interview Essama and Martin in a closed-door session, the school announced.

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May 022013

Children’s Hospital officials and the lawmakers who brokered a compromise regarding their expansion to the adjacent New Orleans Adolescent Hospital will hold a neighborhood meeting next week to discuss additional mental-health services that are planned. Continue reading »

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