May 082012

The Louisiana SPCA "Puzzle Dog" sculpture. (via

Still shopping for the right Mother’s Day gift? Two local nonprofits are offering unique ideas you may not have thought of: a hand-made bouquet of fresh flowers at a local garden, or having her name included on a “Puzzle Dog” sculpture. Continue reading »

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May 072012

The blue icon marks Sunday morning's robbery, and the red icon shows the evening incident that ended in a shooting. (map via

Armed gunmen targeted two elderly men in Central City in separate incidents Sunday, shooting a 67-year-old in the neck and robbing an 83-year-old of his cash, according to police reports. Continue reading »

May 072012

Billed as a “‘Treme’ vs. ‘The Wire’ Battle of the Bands,” and hosted by two stars of David Simon’s acclaimed dramas, four musical groups representing New Orleans and Baltimore will face off at Tipitina’s on Friday night to raise money for local musical charities. Continue reading »

May 072012

The Du Mois gallery on Freret Street will open its newest show, “Visages,” on Saturday evening, and will continue accepting submissions through May 15 for its annual “Cold Drink” printmaking show. Continue reading »

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May 072012

The vacant fire station at 4877 Laurel Street. (photo via the Preservation Resource Center,

The city is considering auctioning off a century-old fire station on Laurel Street and a vacant lot in Broadmoor for what would likely be a residential renovation, but the City Planning Commission must first hold a hearing Tuesday on the prospect of releasing the publicly-held property into private hands. Continue reading »

May 072012

Owen Courreges

Over the past few days, New Orleans has played host to several “Jane Jacobs walks” in which residents walk or ride bicycles in their neighborhoods to better appreciate ground-level interactions between residents and businesses. These are a show of solidarity against isolation and atomization that often permeates modern society, and, a celebration of older, denser urban development schemes. Continue reading »

May 072012

Neighbors United will meet Tuesday evening to begin a discussion of how many more alcohol permits should be awarded along Freret Street, association officials said. A potluck gathering will start at 6 p.m. at Samuel J. Green Charter School (2319 Valence Street), with the actual meeting starting at 6:30 p.m.

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May 062012

Benjamin Morris

I have a confession to make: I’ve always loved leaving New Orleans. Not just for the rush of packing suitcases, or the expectation of visiting a new place, or the pleasures of going to see family and friends. Nor just for the sense of mental refreshment you get when you break out of your routine, or the wonder and delight at a novel landscape. Nor even just for the thought of what to eat elsewhere. All of these things play into it, but there’s another reason entirely.

It’s that you get to come back.

Continue reading »

May 052012

Participants in a "Jane Jacobs Walk" on Freret Street file past a building owned by the Barreca family, described by business leaders as one of the last major blighted properties on the booming commercial corridor. The Jane Jacobs Walk, held on the celebrated urbanist's birthday, is intended to foster ground-level discussion about the forces that shape neighborhoods. "New ideas need old buildings," said walk organizer Andy Brott, citing one of Jacobs' famous statements. (Robert Morris,

For decades, Freret Street was a thriving commercial corridor in the heart of Uptown New Orleans, but the murder of Bill Long in 1984 in front of his bakery was a “death knell” that sent the street into a spiral of decay and neglect, said Andy Brott and Lauren Anderson, two guides for about a dozen people Saturday morning on a “Jane Jacobs Walk” to discuss the history and evolution of the street.

After years of work by community leaders, the destructive flooding after Hurricane Katrina and a permissive rezoning, the corridor suddenly sprang back to life with a flurry of new restaurant openings over the last two years, and Saturday’s walk served to explore some of the factors that led to the renaissance. Continue reading »

May 052012

Computer-generated sketch of the suspect in a robbery on Chestnut Street (via NOPD)

Police are seeking the public’s help identifying a man who attacked a woman and stole her purse on Chestnut Street just off Napoleon and, in a separate case, finding a man accused of a home burglary on Coliseum Street nearby, authorities said. Continue reading »

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May 052012

A Friday night raid on The Hangar nightclub at 1511 S. Rendon by state Alcohol and Tobacco Control agents found 39 minors inside, including a 4-year-old, though none were caught drinking, according to a report by Monica Hernandez of our partners at WWL-TV. A manager told WWL that the young people were there for a wrestling match intended as a family event, but authorities said the bar was warned the match could not be an all-ages event. Continue reading »

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May 052012

Craig Giesecke

As this column is published, TBK and I are off on an adventure, albeit a brief one. We’ll be in Pensacola, watching my oldest graduate from college. While this launch was somewhat delayed, it is every bit as wonderful as anticipated and, bursting with pride, it also allows us to indulge ourselves in one of our favorite pastimes.

Junk food. Continue reading »