Oktoberfest and Halloween in the Big Easy 2 Oct 2015, 9:03 am
Ahhhhh, October! Mardi Gras happens in February, but the festival season starts to really take off in early fall. The weather has cooled off to a lovely 80 degree average, so outdoor festivals are comfortable. We eagerly await two big events, Oktoberfest and Hallowe’en!
You wouldn’t expect New Orleans to do Oktoberfest on a small scale, and we don’t! Taking place over three weekends at the Deutsches Haus (which is easily reached via a 25 minute bus ride from 1896 O’Malley House), Oktoberfest is a celebration of German heritage, which includes delicious Bavarian foods like Sauerbraten, Bratwurst, Krautwickel and Sauerkraut, among others. Don’t miss the giant pretzels! You’ll enjoy rivers of beer and tastes of German wines and liquors – have you ever tried Buttershot Schnapps? Mmmmmmm, tasty! There is even a Kinderecke, or Kid’s Corner, to entertain the wee ones. Depending on which weekend you attend, events include the 4th Annual Dachshund Dash, a Swordfighting Performance, Disco Amigos, a 5K run, the Beer Holding Contest, and the 610 Stompers, billed as “Ordinary Men, Extraordinary Moves”. Here’s a sample:
Oktoberfest will be held Friday and Saturday, October 12, 13, 19, 20, 26 and 27.
Halloween is celebrated in a big way in N.O., just like everything else! The spooky festivities start on October 24th in the Vieux Carre as the Krewe of Boo rolls the Halloween Parade! This amazing spectacle combines fantastic floats with incredible, locally-produced throws (candy, souvenir cups, coffee pacs, light-up medallion beads, VooDoo doll pins and magnets, children’s grab bags, Chee Wees and MORE!). This year’s parade King is the dashing and handsome Sidney Torres IV. The parade runs from Chartres and Elysian Fields, down Decatur/Peters, up and down Canal, then up Tchoupitoulas, St Joseph and Convention Center and then on to Mardi Gras World, where the Monster Mash After-Party will start at 9pm.
From October 29-November 1, 2015, New Orleans celebrates Halloween LGBT Style with events over the course of the “extended weekend”. 2015’s theme is “Fall of the Pharaohs,” and means that we will see a lot of beautiful Cleopatras and hunky pharaohs haunting the the corner of Bourbon and St. Ann streets in the French Quarter. Events include: Thee Lazurus Ball, Silent Auction and Wine Raffle on Thursday, Republic New Orleans with DJ Grind on Friday, Contemporary Arts Center with DJ Gauthreaux on Saturday and a Brunch, Jazz and Gospel Entertainment at House of Blues, followed by a Second Line on Sunday.
The big night itself, October 31st, is a fun time for all. Take part in Haunted Tours, Cemetery tours in the “Cities of the Dead”, VooDoo Shops, and street parties, especially on Frenchmen Street in the Faubourg Marigny and the French Quarter – people watching will be the best pastime, as locals and tourists alike dress in the most outlandish costumes to celebrate!
Southern Late Summer – September in New Orleans 3 Sep 2015, 10:15 am
It’s starting to cool off, just a little, here in the Crescent City, which means the Festival season is just around the corner. The city’s B&Bs will start to fill up earlier, as people venture out to places unknown. New Orleans is an excellent spot for those wishing to extend the summer a bit, and we’ve got lots of adventures in store for you.
Starting on the second, Southern Decadence is one of the largest, premier events in New Orleans. Commemorating its 44th year, this celebration of gay culture brings joyful events to the city, such as Gay New Orleans Walking Tours each evening at 5:30, parades, starting with the Knights of Decadence on Friday at 7pm, and the 41st Annual Official Southern Decadence Parade, kicking off at the Golden Lantern at 2pm on Sunday. There are too many events to list here, from block parties and dance parties and so much more – check the events schedule for a full line-up.
This weekend is the Louisiana Seafood Festival, a free event held in City Park, just a few minutes from 1896 O’Malley House. The free event takes places Friday-Sunday from 11:00am to 7:00pm, and provides what is the staple of the best of NOLA’s fests: music and food! There are 25 food vendors from which to sample seafood delicacies, live music from 15 different acts, a kids tent and live seafood cooking demonstrations, not to mention the Art Village, a great place to pick up unique souvenirs to take home.
The 5th Annual Restaurant Week flies under the banner “We Live to Eat”. It’s a fitting motto for the home of the Po’ Boy, the Muffaletta, and Oysters Rockefeller. From the 14-20, you can enjoy prix fixe menus at some of the city’s most iconic (and expensive) restaurants, at a 25% discount – participating restaurants will be offering two-course lunches for under $20 and three-course dinners for under $39.
Our final uniquely New Orleans event is the Seventh Annual Burlesque Festival, held September 17-20. There will be workshops, parties, a book signing, burlesque shows, and a grand ball to honor the Queen of Burlesque. Since the events are all held in different venues, tickets must be purchased separately. These are adults-only events, so plan accordingly.
1896 O’Malley House is a great headquarters for all of your adventurous gallivanting! We offer comfortable rooms, a delicious breakfast, free beer and wine 24/7 and a relaxing courtyard for your downtime.
Bowling in New Orleans 23 Jul 2015, 2:01 pm
You might think that bowling would be last on your list of Things to Do in New Orleans, but as with most things, New Orleans does bowling a little bit different and might I say, a little bit better than most places.
Just a little more than a mile from 1896 O’Malley House is the famous Rock ‘N’ Bowl. Now in a newish location on South Carrollton Avenue, the place is so much more than a bowling alley. Since this is NOLA, you will have live music, a dance floor, delicious bar food and drinks. The music is generally Wednesday through Saturday nights and some Sundays, and consists of names you know, like Amanda Shaw and the Cute Guys, Horace Trahan and so many more. The dance floor is “sprung”, which means it has more than one layer to make it softer to the foot, so you can dance longer and harder than usual!
The bartenders are known for their friendliness and ability to make drinks of all kinds. The food is not what you’d expect from a bowling alley – how about a house grind burger, on a Leidenheimer onion bun? You can also choose from fried treats, a chicken with greens salad, and even Boudin Douzaine. Wait- what was that? Yes – a basket of delicious, deep-fried sausage balls. Wash it all down with a beer, then try the Bread Pudding Po’ Boy for dessert. Don’t worry about the calories! You’ll dance and bowl them right off!
When you’re in New Orleans, you want to visit the most iconic spots in the city, and Rock ‘N’ Bowl will not disappoint!
Satchmo SummerFest – New Orleans, July 30 – August 2, 2015 3 Jul 2015, 11:01 am
Satchmo SummerFest has become a hot ticket in New Orleans in more way than one! The blistering days of summer combine with the sounds of cool jazz to create a musical storm to wash away the doldrums and bring out the crowds to the grounds of the Old U.S. Mint.
This will be the 15th annual SatchmoFest, which started as a one-off in 2001 to honor one of New Orleans’ most famous denizens, Louis Armstrong, otherwise known as Satchmo. It was such a huge success that it has occurred every year since. The event brings together Jazz fans of all ages to appreciate two live music stages outside, featuring Deacon John, Jewel Brown, Bill Summers, Rebirth Brass Band, Yoshio Toyama, Kermit Ruffins and over 40 more.
Concessions will be available for drinks and food, and plenty of fun for the children, including a book nook, coconut decorating, instrument making and even a Kids Second Line Parade! How fun!
Indoors, Jazz aficionados will take part in seminars inside the Old Mint, in the Cabaret Theater. You can learn all about Satchmo himself, as well as history of jazz, and presentations on other jazz greats.
In addition to the festival events listed above, you can also take part in a screening of High Society at Le Petit Theatre, the opening reception at the Omni Hotel on July 30 at 8pm, the exciting and fun Opening Day Second Line Parade at Washington Artillery Park , starting at 10:30am and a Jazz Mass and Second Line Parade from the Church of Sidney Bechet on Sunday, August 2nd.
Make sure to reserve your rooms as soon as possible, the city sells out early for this amazing summer spectacle!
Bastille Day in New Orleans – July 11-14, 2015 12 Jun 2015, 9:59 am
Bastille Day is celebrated in France much like we celebrate Independence Day in the US. It commemorates two days – July 14, 1789, in which the Bastille was stormed and overcome by French citizens, and July 14, 1790, The Fête de la Fédération, which celebrated the unity of the French Nation, and peace following the violence of the former year. In New Orleans, which is also known as “Most French of American Cities”, Bastille Day is celebrated as well!
On July 11th, the Alliance Française of New Orleans, and partners, the French Consulate and French-American Chamber of Commerce are throwing the Bastille Day Fête in Spanish Plaza from 11:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. There will be live music, French cuisine vendors, lots of fun for the kids, and a “French Dog” contest. This is a free event.
On the 12th at 11am, the CitroëNOLA French Car Club will have a parade from the Bywater neighborhood area, along Chartres Street to Canal and through the French Quarter area to their final destination parked along the 700 block of Frenchmen Street along Washington Square Park. The cars and their knowledgeable owners will be available for viewing and visiting from noon-4pm. Juts before 4pm, make your way to Decatur Street between Jackson Square and the French Market for the Bartender and Waiters Race. After the race, attend the awards ceremony and enjoy live music.
Monday the 13th features the Alliance Française French Cooking Class at the Southern Food & Beverage Museum. This is not a free event, and registration is required. Also on the 13th, Encore Aznavour! will take place right here in our neighborhood at the Mid-City Theater. Featuring the music of the legendary Charles Aznavour, this is an elegant evening you won’t want to miss!
The Festivities come to an end on Tuesday the 14th at 10am, as the Council of French Societies lays a ceremonial wreath at the Statue of Jeanne d’Arc at the French Market. A celebratory glass of wine (soda for kids) will be offered by the Council of French Societies.
No matter when you come to New Orleans, you will find unique and fun activites going on!
New Orleans Pride – June 18-21, 2015 28 May 2015, 4:36 pm
New Orleans Pride, one of the fastest growing pride celebrations in the nation, is taking place the third weekend in June this year. So many events make up this festival! Some are family-friendly, others are decidedly adults-only, so keep that in mind as you decide which to attend.
Patrick McDonald brings his one-man show to the Bourbon Pub on Thursday the 18th – be ready to laugh as you hear the travails in Hollywood and the Pacific Crest Trail of Polly Cockit and her Pocketbook, Barbara. After all… what doesn’t kill you, only makes you blonder!
The big kick-off party will be held on Friday the 19th at Harrah’s Hotel Ballroom. The party runs from 9-11pm. You can have a chance to meet this year’s Grand Marshalls, Reed Kelly and Josh Canfield, a.k.a. the “Broadway Boyfriends” and stars of Survivor. Enjoy buffet style foods and a cash bar, and a keynote address by Ryan Sallans. The party celebrates the New Orleans Transgender community and will include a fashion show and entertainment by the Big Easy Buddies: Jersey Buddies.
Also on Friday is the Pride Girl Party at the The Always Lounge. The Girl Party consists of a variety show, followed by a Dance Party. You’ll love the drag, burlesque, comedy and so much more!
An All-Faiths Prayer Service on Saturday June 20, 2015 from 10:30am -11:30am kicks off the New Orleans Pride Festival in Washington Park. Following the service is Family Day in the park from 11am – 4pm. Bring your blankets and lawn chairs to enjoy live music and over 50 vendors of food, drink and crafts. Take a rest after Family Day and come back in the evening for the Pride Parade, which rolls through the Historic French Quarter, starting at 7pm. After the parade, take the kiddies home and jump into the fun at the Pride Dance Party with DJ Blacklow at 10pm at Oz New Orleans.
Pride weekend winds up on Sunday the 21st with the Pride T-Party at The Bourbon Pub and Parade. Doors open at 3pm $10 cover includes Drink and Drown from 6-8PM. You’ll probably want to stay over in New Orleans on Monday to recover! Stay with us at 1896 O’Malley House to have a comfortable spot to sleep and enjoy our delicious home-cooked breakfast before you set out to relish the festival!
New Orleans Mid-City Bayou Booga-loo – May 15-17, 2015 8 May 2015, 12:41 pm
If you are in New Orleans the 3rd week of May, you won’t want to miss the annual Mid-City Bayou Booga-loo! This event was started 10 years ago by the Mothership Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to encouraging social change and improving the quality of life for Louisiana residents through the promotion of arts, culture and recreation. The Booga-loo is a main fund-raising event for the foundation, which uses the profits from the festival to plant Southern Live Oak trees in the city that were lost to Hurricane Katrina. This worthy endeavor is made even more special by it’s location in the Mid-City neighborhood, in which 1896 O’Malley House is located, making it very convenient for our guests to attend!
The Booga-loo will run Friday the 15th from 5pm to 9 pm, Saturday the 16th from 11am to 9pm, and Sunday the 17th from 11am to 8:30pm. The festivities start on Friday evening with three different music stages presenting six different acts.
On Saturday morning, the Zulu-Bayou Boogaloo 5K Run
starts at the intersection of
Broad and Poydras at 8:30am and finishes at the Festival. The
1/2 mile fun walk takes place within the Festival grounds. The
winner of the 5K gets to ride on the world famous Zulu Parade on
Mardi Gras Day! Now that is a worthy prize!
From 8:45am to 2pm on Saturday, take part in the 2015 MCVG Bayou Boogaloo Bicycle Pub Crawl for a donation of only $20 and visit six bars, finishing at the festival. What a way to start the day!
At the festival, you will be amazed at the sheer number of musical acts, performing on two stages. There is a wonderful Kid’s Tent, with tons of great activities for the littles. You can spend hours browsing the Arts Market, where dozens of artists will be displaying their wares.
Of course there will be food! Did you even have to ask? Several purveyors of fine festival eats will be available, including jambalaya, alligator, Po’ Boys, BBQ, Brats, even vegetarian delights – you won’t walk away hungry!
The Boogaloo is a free event, but to make it extra-special, you can purchase VIP tickets, which involve side-stage viewing, air-conditioned restrooms, cooking demos, shady seating, food and a private bar.
Parking for the festival is the not-fun part. Leave your car with us and feel free to take advantage of NOLA’s excellent bus system, bike, walk (it’s less than a mile from the inn!), or ride a streetcar. The festival is held on the banks of Bayou St. John, official address is 500 N. Jefferson Davis Parkway. The Art Market is across Orleans Avenue from the festival.
No matter how you get there, you will enjoy this uniquely NOLA festival!
Hot Fun in the New Orleans Summertime 17 Apr 2015, 3:53 pm
People often think the only time to visit New Orleans is around Mardi Gras, and that we don’t have anything going on the rest of the year. Nothing could be farther from the truth! NOLA is a city that never stops having fun – even in July, when the sun is hot and the music and festivities are even hotter!
We start the month with a big celebration of our nation’s birth- the annual and world renowned Go Forth on the River – wherein thousands gather on the banks of the Mississippi to watch Dueling Barges, each with an amazing fireworks display choreographed to patriotic music, and visible from both sides of the river.
The same weekend is the acclaimed Essence Music Festival, July 2-5, 2015. The lineup for this event is incredible, with musical superstars such as Usher, Mary J Blige, and Missy Elliot. Comedians include Kevin Hart and Luenell. The inspiration contimues with speakers Deepak Chopra, Shaun T, Kim Burrell and many more. Most of the event will be held at the Superdome and the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. It’s recommended to come to town on Wednesday the 1st and leave on Monday the 6th so you don’t miss any part of this powerhouse festival.
The following weekend, on July 11th, a uniquely New Orleans affair takes over the streets of the French Quarter. Patterned after the famous Running of the Bulls in Pamplona, Spain, the San Fermin en Nueva Orleans still has runners with their red sashes, but substitutes Roller Derby dames for the steers. Which is more dangerous? You decide! Stay for the whole festival though, it starts on the 9th with a wine dinner, continues on the 10th with El Txupinazo, the kick-off party, crescendos with the La Fiesta de Pantalones party and finishes with Pobre Mi party, all benefiting Animal Rescue New Orleans. What not to like!?
Takes of the Cocktail is an event for pub professionals and partakers alike. This year it’s held July 15-19, 2015 and is a week-long libation celebration. Taking place at different venues throughout the city, there are tastings, workshops, classes and demonstrations. And we can’t think of a better place for it than New Orleans!
The hot month of July finishes with the Satchmo Summerfest in the French Quarter July 30 – August 2. There will be music, food, music-history seminars, a jazz mass, a second-line parade, an art contest and more. No true jazz aficionado would dream of passing up on this commemoration of a New Orleans native son, Louis Armstrong.
Make your plans and book your stay soon, so you don’t miss out on any of the hot New Orleans fun in the summertime!
Summer in New Orleans – Events and Festivals of June 2015 27 Mar 2015, 10:14 am
If you are looking out the window at snow drifts, you might be dreaming of a summer that is hot in more ways than one! Make your plans for June now (so you don’t miss the chance to stay with us!) and be in New Orleans for some unique events that can only take place in the Crescent City!
Fans of the celebrated HBO series Treme will find their joy in the Louisiana Cajun-Zydeco Festival, which is produced by the same people who put on Jazz Fest. the Cajun-Zydeco fest will be held at Louis Armstrong Park in Treme on Saturday, June 6 and Sunday, June 7, 2015, from 11am. to 8:30pm. both days. The festival features artists from all over Louisiana, dance lessons, a crafts fair and of course, food – both cooking demonstrations and vendors. This IS New Orleans, after all!
This year’s Festigals has the theme, “Ordinary Women, Extraordinary Journeys!”. The festival will be June 11-14, 2015, with events at different locations throughout the city. How about “Bodacious Bras For A Cause Luncheon and Auction“? This fun fest promotes networking, support of women’s causes and female empowerment.
If baseball is more your thing, attend Star Wars Night at Zephyr Field in Metarie. Wearing Star Wars themed gear gets you into the game for just $5. Meet and take photos with Darth Vader and the Stormtroopers. The first 1000 fans get a free light saber. After the game, enjoy an intergalactic fireworks display!
This is not your mama’s tomato festival – The Annual French Market Creole Tomato Festival is dedicated to the delicious red fruits grown in the rich Mississippi Delta soil and vine ripened to give you that fresh and rich taste you remember from childhood summers. You’ll enjoy wonderful dishes made with the pomme d’amour, three music stages and a “Best of the Fest” contest.
Don’t let summer pass you by without some fun in the sun (or shade) at one of our Louisiana festivals!
April Showers Bring Awesome Events to New Orleans! 6 Mar 2015, 3:08 pm
It doesn’t actually rain more in April than other months in New Orleans, but sometimes those showers are welcome as we head into the warmer months! April is chock-full of fun events for visitors to our lovely city!
The first weekend in April brings two distinctly New Orleans events: The Crescent City Classic and the Freret Street Fest. The Allstate Sugar Bowl Crescent City Classic is one of the oldest 10K races in the US! It’s one of New Orleans’ fine annual traditions. After the race, you can attend the Freret Street Fest, an annual festival presented by the Freret Market to showcase the vendors and products of the neighborhood. Both events take place on Saturday, April 4.
Easter Sunday is on April 5th this year – and of course, we celebrate with parades and festive fun! The French Quarter has three parades, one at 10:30, which ends at St. Louis Cathedral for 11:00 a.m. Mass. At 1pm is the Chris Owens French Quarter Easter Parade, followed later in the afternoon by the Gay Easter Parade. At 9am, meet up in City Park for a huge Easter Egg Hunt.
April 9-12, 2015 brings the famous French Quarter Festival, also known as “The World’s Largest Block Party!”. Four days, over 1600 Musical Acts, more than 60 Food and Beverage Vendors, entry fee, 0 dollars- it’s free to get in! Make sure to purchase official fest beverages to help keep this a free festival for all!
The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival is a HUGE music festival that takes place over 7 days in two weekends. The headline acts are amazing this year – Lady GaGa and Tony Bennett, Keith Urban, Ed Sheeran, Elton John and so many more! This fest takes place at Fair Grounds Race Course. Get your tickets in advance!
Golf fans will love the Zurich Golf Classic the week of April 20-26, 2015. The action takes place at the Tournament Players Club. Top flight golfers from the PGA Championship Tournament Circuit will be playing, to the delight of spectators.
Anytime of year is great in NOLA, but April brings temperate weather, fun festivals and even a few rain showers- make sure to be here for the fun!