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Arthur Hardy: At least 2 krewes to 'salute' Tom Benson with floats; Endymion to roll out float with 30 LED panels, 3 video screens

Advocate photo by VERONICA DOMINACH --The Krewe of Endymion unveil the new lighting that will adorn their Mardi Gras floats in New Orleans, La. Thursday, Feb. 20, 2014. The decorative lights will add to the atmosphere and revelry along parade routes, as well as allow the crowd to see the beautiful artwork on the floats.

Mardi Gras expert Arthur Hardy answered your parade questions in a live chat Wednesday.

Here are some of the questions and answers.

Question: Have you heard if there'll be any Benson-related floats?
Hardy: I can't say which ones-- sworn to secrecy. But yes, at least two krewes will be "saluting" Mr. Benson.

Question: What will be Endymion's best float this year?
Hardy: So… Continue reading →

Youth get hooked on fishing

Advocate staff photo by SHERRI MILLER -- Makenzie Morter, 9, practices her casting during the John C. Burrus School of Fish free fishing clinic at the New Canal Lighthouse on Lake Pontchartrain in New Orleans on Wednesday, June 24, 2015.

Youngsters ages 8 to 15 learned to bait and cast at a free fishing clinic at the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation New Canal Lighthouse on Lakeshore Drive. The John C. Burrus School of Fish is a learn-to-fish program sponsored by the foundation and the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. Children gathered at… Continue reading →

Throw me somethin’: St. Henry’s Church to throw reunion party

Photo provided by Rummel High - Brother Gale Condit, right, congratulates Bill Arthurs for his 50 years of service to Archbishop Rummel High School in Metairie.

Celebrating 159 years of history and tradition, St. Henry’s Catholic Church continues to draw the people of New Orleans to its sanctuary at 812 Gen. Pershing St. The Uptown church will hold its 26th Feast of St. Henry Reunion beginning with Mass at 3 p.m. Saturday, July 11, followed by a block party from 4 p.m. to 7… Continue reading →

Around Jefferson: Program to educate youth about disaster preparedness

Photo provided by Rummel High - Brother Gale Condit, right, congratulates Bill Arthurs for his 50 years of service to Archbishop Rummel High School in Metairie.

The second annual Region One Teen Community Emergency Response Team Academy will be held Monday, July 13, to Friday, July 17, inside the multipurpose center on the campus of Belle Chasse Primary School, 539 F. Edward Hebert Blvd., Belle Chasse. The five-day event is open to youth groups and teens ages 11 to 19 in Jefferson, Orleans,… Continue reading →

Maafa recognizes slavery’s tragic past

Photo provided by Ache - Jamilah Peters-Muhammad offers a dance of praise at the 2014 Maafa Commemoration. This year's commemoration begins with a healing ceremony from 7 to 9 a.m. in Congo Square followed by a procession that will end with a ceremony at the Mississippi River.

The millions of Africans and their descendents who suffered and perished in slavery will be remembered on the morning of Saturday, July 4, with singing, dancing, drumming and prayer during the 15th annual Maafa Commemoration. According to a statement from Ashe Cultural Arts Center, sponsors of the event, Maafa is a Kiswahili word meaning “horrific tragedy.”… Continue reading →

JP Library Lagniappe: Adult spelling bee to be held at Metairie library

The East Bank Regional Library adult spelling bee will occur at 7 p.m. Wednesday, July 8, at the East Bank Regional Library, 4747 W. Napoleon Ave., Metairie. (An adult spelling bee at the West Bank Regional Library will occur in August.) Adults 18 and older may participate in the spelling bee. The event is free of charge… Continue reading →

Fun with nordc: Competition showcases talented N.O. teens

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER -- Victor Richard

After advancing through auditions, talented teens from across the city will compete at the NOLA Teen Vocal and Dance Competition from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Wednesday at Lyons Rec Center, 624 Louisiana Ave. Produced by the NORDC Teen Council and hosted by R&B singer Kevin Stylez, the event also will feature performances by special guests… Continue reading →

River Views: River Parishes to celebrate Independence Day on July 3

Advocate staff photo by ELIOT KAMENITZ--New River Parish columnist Lori Lyons  in New Orleans, La. Monday, April 20, 2015.

St. Charles Parish will hold its 25th annual Independence Day Celebration from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday, July 3, at the West Bank Bridge Park, 13825 River Road, featuring a performance by popular local band, the Bucktown All-Stars. The event will begin with an opening ceremony at 6:15 p.m., featuring a flag-raising by a local Boy… Continue reading →

Second Harvest Food Bank distributes commodities to eligible, needy families

Advocate staff photo by BRAD BOWIE -- Mary Ellen Vincent, a financial advisor with Morgan Stanley, volunteers at Second Harvest Food Bank after the donation of $50,000 by her company to the food bank on Wednesday afternoon in Lafayette. Morgan Stanley, the financial services corporation, will donate more than $4 million over a period of three years to food banks like Second Harvest as part of their Feeding America campaign.

Second Harvest Food Bank is distributing commodities to eligible, needy families under the Food Bank Program in the following parishes: Acadia, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, Evangeline, Iberia, Jefferson, Jefferson Davis, Lafayette, Lafourche, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Charles, St. Landry, St. Martin, St. Mary, St. Tammany, St. John the Baptist, Tangipahoa, Terrebonne, Vermilion and Washington. Commodities will be… Continue reading →

Author Rachel Held Evans plans New Orleans lectures

Author Rachel Held Evans will deliver three talks in New Orleans the weekend of Nov. 7-8 as the guest of St. Charles Avenue Baptist Church and the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship of Louisiana. She will lecture at 11 a.m. and at 1 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 7, and will preach at the 11 a.m. service on Sunday,… Continue reading →

Children learn about caring for orphaned kittens

Advocate staff photo by SHERRI MILLER -- SpayMart volunteer Joan Avent bottle feeds a 3-week-old kitten during the Orphaned Kitten Foster Training class at East Bank Regional Library in Metairie on June 18.

Children learned about what it takes to raise an abandoned kitten at an Orphaned Kitten Foster Training class held at East Bank Regional Library in Metairie. The Jefferson Parish Animal Shelter, the SpayMart Kitten Foster Program and local veterinarian Amanda Perkins presented the Kitten Workshop to teach people about the care and feeding… Continue reading →

Visiting Pet Program volunteer orientation scheduled

Photo provided by Visiting Pet Program -- Nicole Parks and her dog McKenzie check out the Visiting Pet Program's new therapy booth, which it will set up at pet events.

Orientation for pet owners interested in participating in the Visiting Pet Program will be held from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 12, at the Harahan Senior Center, 100 Elodie St., Harahan. The orientation session also will be an opportunity to see the program’s new therapy booth, which will be available for pet events.… Continue reading →

NOLA Veggie Fest benefits no-kill animal sanctuary

Photo provided by NOLA Veggie Fest--Among those on hand for the NOLA Veggie Fest were Robert Benson and his pet rabbit Beignet, seen here with Isabella Lombard. The event was presented with volunteer support from the New Orleans Vegetarian Society.

The two-day NOLA Veggie Fest recently drew hundreds of people to the New Orleans Healing Center, where they learned about the benefits of a plant-based diet from guest speakers and cooking demonstrations, sampled vegan products and purchased meals from local vendors. Proceeds from the event went toward the Humane Society of Louisiana’s no-kill animal sanctuary and long-distance… Continue reading →

St. Mary’s Dominican High School honors longtime employees

Photo provided by St. Mary's Dominican High School - Employees Rosalie Abadie, Jamie Lassere, Marcia Peyton and Ashley Reso were recently honored for 20 years service to St. Mary's Dominican High School. From left are school President Cynthia A. Thomas, Abadie, Peyton, Reso and principal Carolyn Favre.

At the annual Personnel Mass of Thanksgiving, St. Mary’s Dominican High School honored faculty and staff for service ranging from five to 20 years. Recognized for 20 years of service were Rosalie Abadie, fine arts; Jamie Lassere, vice president, advancement; Marcia Peyton, drama; and Ashley Reso, math. Those with 15 years of service are… Continue reading →

Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation plans sunset trolley tour

The Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation will present a lakefront history trolley tour and social from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, July 18, at the New Canal Lighthouse, 8001 Lakeshore Drive, New Orleans. In exchange for a suggested donation of $20, participants will enjoy wine and light refreshments before or after an educational sunset ride along… Continue reading →

Master gardeners put skills to work for Insectarium

Photo provided by Joe E. BaucumÑMaster gardeners learn about the role of the Audubon Insectarium greenhouse from entomologist Zack Lemann, right. The master gardeners are, from left,  Joe Baucum, Daphne Ferdinand, Sheilah Hurstell, Bettie Wickboldt and Jerry Hayes.

Master Gardeners are bringing the science-based knowledge and expertise of the LSU AgCenter to the Audubon Insectarium as volunteers in the Audubon greenhouse in eastern New Orleans. The greenhouse supplies vegetative food stuffs for the insects hatched and nurtured at the Audubon Insectarium Insect Rearing Facility, and supplies both host and nectar plants for… Continue reading →

Free Medicare counseling available

The Louisiana Councils on Aging, Area Agencies on Aging, Aging and Disability Resource Centers and their partners through the Governor’s Office of Elderly Affairs invite all Medicare-eligible or enrolled seniors or adults with a disability to visit their offices and get their benefits updated. “Medicare benefits change every year, and it is important that even enrolled Medicare… Continue reading →

Garden clubs hold spring show

Photo provided by Kathy Boudreaux -  Top Horticulture Award Winners are, from left, Lupe Perez, Patricia Ortelano, Betty Rena and Ellen Cook.

The Pavilion of the Two Sisters, New Orleans Botanical Gardens at City Park was the site of a beautiful flower show in April that was open to the public. The theme of the show was “Spring Gardens Dance With Nature.” The show was sponsored by the Jefferson Parish Council of Garden Clubs and the Federated Council… Continue reading →

New Orleans Artists Against Hunger and Homelessness distributes grants

Photo provided by NOAAHH - New Orleans Artists Against Hunger and Homelessness grants recipients are shown, from left, Sr. Lillian Flavin, Hope House; Sr. Beth Mouch, St. Jude Community Center; Roselle Mungam, Jewish Family Services of Greater New Orleans; Debra South Jones, Just The Right Attitude; and Sr. Clarita Bourque, Marinite Bywater Project. Standing, from left: Steve Rivera, Project Lazarus; LaShawna Schofield, Raintree Children and Family Services; Renée Blanche, Ozanam Inn; Vera ONeil, Food For Families; NOAAHH co-founder Allen Toussaint; Benjamin Wortham, Ciara Community Services; Noel Twilbeck, NO/AIDS Task Force; Sr. Enid Storey, Lantern Light;  and Laura Tuggle, Southeast Louisiana Legal Services. Not pictured: Lisa Lynde, Lukes House Clinic.

New Orleans Artists Against Hunger and Homelessness, or NOAAHH, distributed $26,000 in grants to 14 organizations serving the Greater New Orleans region. The grants were awarded at the annual Bread for the World reception held at Loyola University. NOAAHH co-founder Allen Toussaint presented grants to the following recipients: Ciara Community Services, Food for Families,… Continue reading →

Press Club of New Orleans awards scholarships to two mass communications career hopefuls

Former Press Club of New Orleans President Kevin Mumphrey with Southeastern Louisiana University sophomore Maria Goddard on June 15, 2015. Goddard was one of two Louisiana college students who received a $2,500 scholarship from the Press Club.

The Press Club of New Orleans recently awarded a $2,500 scholarship to Southeastern Louisiana University sophomore Maria Goddard and University of Louisiana at Lafayette junior Holly Duchmann. Goddard and Duchmann each received checks meant to support their pursuit of a career in journalism, public relations or other mass communication fields. The two were… Continue reading →

Crescent City neighborhood briefs for July 1, 2015

ETERNAL FLAME: The Town of Jean Lafitte will host the lighting of the Eternal Flame at 7 p.m. Wednesday to honor fallen military veterans of the Lafitte area. The ceremony will take place at Jean Lafitte Town Hall, 2654 Jean Lafitte Blvd. Mayor Timothy Kerner and the Lafitte Town Council invite the public to… Continue reading →

Crescent City health briefs for July 1, 2015

MEDICARE ANNUAL WELLNESS VISITS: Medicare beneficiaries with Traditional Part B are eligible for free annual wellness visits with a certified nurse practitioner, designed to help them stay healthy, safe and independent for a long time. Medicare is billed for this visit. Life Line Community Healthcare will be offering these wellness visits free; to schedule an appointment… Continue reading →

Crescent City faith notes for July 1, 2015

Photo provided by Stephanie Ledet - Father James Nguyen Bach, pastor of Holy Spirit Church, is served some of the delicious food enjoyed on the Feast Day of the Algiers church.

VACATION BIBLE SCHOOL: Only 19 openings remain for the vacation Bible school that will be held from 9 a.m. to noon July 20-24 at St. Charles United Methodist Church, 1905 Ormond Blvd., Destrehan. The school’s theme will be “Come and See,” and it is open to children entering kindergarten through sixth grade. The phone number for… Continue reading →

School Notes for July 1, 2015

Photo provided by St. Celement of Rome - Robert Francioni is pictured with Father Luis Rodriguez, pastor of St. Clement of Rome Church.

DESTREHAN HIGH: Haley Taylor, 17, a junior at Destrehan High School, recently attended the 2015 Louisiana Federation of Music Clubs State Junior Convention held at Nicholls State University in Thibodaux. Taylor has held the position of junior secretary for the past year. This year, she was elected to junior president for the Louisiana Federation of Music… Continue reading →

Queen of Soul reigns

Advocate photo by Robert Wright -- A few dozen women gathered at the JW Marriott downtown on Thursday afternoon to witness the crowning of the 2015 FestiGals' Grand Diva Irma Thomas. As Grand Diva, Thomas led the annual Stiletto Stroll down historic Canal Street on Saturday, June 13. FestiGals is a New Orleans based women's weekend that takes bonding time with the girls to a new level. In its fifth year,

Grammy Award-winner Irma Thomas was crowned the Grand Diva of this year’s FestiGals events. About 2,000 women took part in the fifth annual FestiGals that included the Bodacious Bras for a Cause luncheon and the annual Stiletto Stroll second-line parade. More than 26 events over the four-day weekend gave… Continue reading →

Stennis to host NASA Week events during Essence

Photo provided by NASAÑAstronaut Stephanie Wilson will be available for autographs and photos as part of NASA Week.

NASA will be supplying out-of-this-world educational components for the Essence Festival in New Orleans on June 30-July 5. Stennis Space Center is host of the NASA Week celebration of space exploration, which will include space-related displays, interactive exhibits and tours of one of NASA’s premiere traveling exhibits, as well as an opportunity to meet and talk… Continue reading →

Throw Me Somethin’: Fourth of July celebration begins Friday

Lynne Jensen

Gearing up for the Fourth of July? Plan to party early at the annual Happy 3rd of July celebration starting at 5:30 p.m. Friday at City Park’s Goldring Woldenberg Great Lawn. Don patriotic red, white and blue garb, grab lawn chairs and blankets and get ready for an evening of outdoor fun, but please don’t stake tents… Continue reading →