Jul 182013
 

A detour sign directs motorists off of the 5100 block of Freret on Wednesday while work crews replace an underground water line. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

The 5100 block of Freret Street will be closed for a month to replace an underground water line prior to an upcoming repaving project there, and cars are being detoured through the neighborhood while crews dig into the pavement. Continue reading »

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Jul 182013
 

The 155-year-old St. Mary’s Assumption Church in the Irish Channel has already raised about half of the $1 million for its “Don’t Let The Tower Tumble” campaign to restore its 190-foot bell tower, which has lost its gold leaf and copper plating and the cross atop it, reports Bill Capo of our partners at WWL-TV.

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Jul 182013
 

By the time of a hearing last week on its $1.4 million budget, Bricolage Academy had enrolled 70 students with 20 still on a waiting list and the possibility of more coming from the OneApp process, making the new charter school’s leader, Josh Densen, confident that the school will meet its goal of 75 students in its first year of kindergarten, according to a report by Stephen Babcock of The Lens.

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Jul 182013
 

Maybe it was just a pot of jambalaya, or maybe the calm before a storm, but by all accounts Wednesday night was a positive step on the road back for Jimmy’s Music Club — about 30 supporters, neighbors and city officials all sharing a bite to eat and some casual conversation before heading into a week that could bring a formal operating agreement and approval from the city to reopen. Continue reading »

Jul 182013
 

Nine robberies in the Garden District and Lower Garden District areas. Not shown: a home invasion case in the 2300 block of Magazine (which is classified differently on NOPD crime maps).

A woman visiting the Garden District was robbed of her purse at gunpoint Wednesday morning, the tenth robbery in 10 days and marking Uptown’s first severe rash of robberies this year.

With the exception of a trio of attacks by bat-wielding teens, most of the cases do not show clear links to one another, New Orleans police officials said Wednesday. Significant evidence, such as photos or DNA, has been recovered in most of the cases, however, so the investigations are all considered active. Continue reading »

Jul 182013
 

Allan Katz and Danae Columbus

We are in mourning for our dear friend Hank Braden, a wonderful person, a gifted political strategist, an outstanding legislator and a visionary who put together coalitions of like-minded people from across racial lines. Continue reading »

Jul 172013
 

ENCORE Academy will grow from 205 to 315 students in 2013-14, its second year of operation, with the addition of a third section of kindergarten, a fourth and a sixth grade, according to a report by Stephen Babcock of The Lens. The school will remain at its location inside the Crocker building on Marengo Street for the coming year, but will have to find a new home for 2014-15.

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Jul 172013
 

As former New Orleans police officers Kevin Wheeler and Juan Vera appeal their termination from the force following their use of a Taser on an unarmed man, the case revolves largely around their assertion that they did not know the man’s weapon had been removed — despite clear evidence of that on a video from a Taser. Continue reading »

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Jul 172013
 

Camp Tekakwitha in Leeds, Maine, June 2013 (photo by Jean-Paul Villere for UptownMessenger.com)

Jean-Paul Villere

My late maternal grandmother was about as New Orleans as it got.  Italian heritage, Bunny Bread, colloquialisms, and all.  And every opportunity I have to invoke a reference to her use of language, I do.  Maybe my most favorite isn’t even hers, but however I will submit it is a waning regional standard.  So while most might properly refer to their brood as their children, permit me a moment to impart to you my upcoming journey to retrieve my chirren from summer camp. Continue reading »

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Jul 162013
 

Homicides (in red) and gun cases (in blue) in the west Carrollton area in the last six months. (map via NOPD)

Although violent crime is down by 15 percent since last year in the New Orleans Police Department’s Uptown-based Second District, residents of west Carrollton say they remain concerned about the shootings and drug dealing they see and hear in their neighborhood. Continue reading »

Jul 162013
 

Deborah Cotton, a correspondent for Gambit and founder of cultural-news website New Orleans Good Good, was one of 19 people in the crossfire during a shooting at a second line in the Seventh Ward on Mother’s Day, and as she continues to recover, Gasa Gasa on Freret Street is holding a benefit July 26 to help with her medical expenses, according to a report by our partners at WWL-TV.

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Jul 162013
 

The former Jimmy’s Music Club location at 8200 Willow. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Robert Morris)

As the operators of Jimmy’s Music Club proceed with their request for liquor sales that would allow the venue to reopen, they are inviting neighbors and city officials to join them for an open house Wednesday evening. Continue reading »

Jul 162013
 

A map of fire incidents in the city from 2008 to 2013. White areas represent 0 to 10 fires in that time; red represents 76 to 90. (via city of New Orleans)

Mayor Mitch Landrieu has rejected an Uptown neighborhood association’s request that a ladder truck in Central City be removed from service rather than the truck on Arabella Street, saying that the squad in Central City responds to fires much more frequently. Continue reading »

Jul 162013
 

jewel bush

Less than a half hour after George Zimmerman was acquitted of murdering Trayvon Martin, an unarmed teenager in self-defense, his brother, Robert Zimmerman Jr. appeared live on CNN to begin damage control.

Robert has since been making the rounds in an aggressive, vigorous push to reassert his brother’s innocence and praise the American judicial system — all the while doing the proverbial happy dance on Trayvon’s grave.

The George Zimmerman “nana-nana boo boo” media tour, led by Robert, is in full throttle. Continue reading »

Jul 152013
 

(map via NOPD)

A man was forced inside a Magazine Street home and robbed at gunpoint early Sunday morning, another man was robbed at gunpoint on Louisiana Avenue and a woman was cut by a robber with a knife Friday night, according to weekend crime reports from the New Orleans Police Department. Continue reading »

Jul 152013
 

Ladder 5 at the Arabella fire station, photographed in March. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Robert Morris)

Owen Courreges

This weekend saw the departure of the New Orleans Fire Department Ladder Truck No. 5 from the Arabella Fire Station.   A final effort to save Ladder 5 came to naught when Mayor Landrieu’s office rejected an alternative plan proposed by affected Uptown residents. 

The reason for the change was, of course, budgeting.  The city, facing a tight budget, lost $4 million in funding to the NOFD with the lapse of the three-year federal grant.  The NOFD wanted to keep all its pumper trucks, so two ladder trucks had to go.  Of the ladder trucks serving the Uptown area, Ladder 5 was the most expendable. Continue reading »