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Book follows ‘100 Days’ leading to Mercedes-Benz Superdome’s Super Bowl blackout, focuses on New Orleans’ rebranding post-Katrina

Advocate staff photo by BILL FEIG -- Half the Mercedes-Benz Superdome is in darkness due to blackout during the second half of the Super Bowl XLVII on Sunday, February 3, 2013 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, La. MAGS OUT / INTERNET OUT/ONLINE OUT/NO SALES/TV OUT/FOREIGN OUT/LOUISIANA BUSINESS INC. OUT/GREATER BATON ROUGE BUSINESS REPORT OUT/225 OUT/10/12 OUT/IN REGISTER OUT/LBI CUSTOM PUBLICATIONS OUT/MANDATORY CREDIT THE ADVOCATE/ BILL FEIG.

New Orleans, someone once said, is a city that is always talking to itself, in constant conversation about its history, its future, and the changes along the way. Add to the names of those who contribute to our civic dialogue that of Brian Boyles, vice president for content of the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities… Continue reading →

Lafayette native Mark St. Cyr to find out Super Bowl Sunday if his Doritos commercial contest entry is the big winner

Photo provided by MARK ST. CYR -- Lafayette native Mark St. Cyr is featured in the opening scene of the 'What Could Go Wrong?' Doritos commercial, one of 10 finalists in its 'Crash the Super Bowl' competition.

Mark St. Cyr will have to wait just like everyone else. It won’t be until today’s Super Bowl that the Lafayette native and actor learns if his “What Could Go Wrong?” entry in Doritos’ “Crash the Super Bowl” commercial contest is a winner. Online voting among the 10 finalists ended Wednesday, and… Continue reading →

Steven Forster’s Party Central: ‘Carnival!’ opens at Garden District Gallery

Advocate photo by Steven Forster -- The Garden District Gallery celebrated the opening of the group invitational exhibition “Carnival!”, featuring paintings in oil, watercolor and pastel; photography; and sculptures capturing the excitement of Carnival in New Orleans. Participating artists include Rolland Golden, Alan Flattmann, Sharon Weilbaecher, Kim Bernadas, Jacques Soulas, Jean Cassels, Patti Adams, Bevil Knapp, Ellis Lucia, Phil Thompson and Andy Levin. The exhibit is open through Feb. 22.. Joe Duke, Stella Golden, Therese Duke, Jim Atwood

The Garden District Gallery celebrated the opening of the group invitational exhibition “Carnival!”, featuring paintings in oil, watercolor and pastel; photography; and sculptures capturing the excitement and magic that is Carnival season in New Orleans. Participating artists include Rolland Golden, Alan Flattmann, Sharon Weilbaecher, Kim Bernadas, Jacques Soulas, Jean Cassels, Patti Adams, Bevil Knapp,… Continue reading →

Steven Forster’s Party Central: Krewe of Dauphine Deaf Ball 2015

Advocate photo by Steven Forster -- Queen Tanya Brown and King Henry Brinkmann reigned over the Krewe of Dauphine Mardi Gras Deaf Ball 2015 at The Landmark Hotel. Ralph Vice, LeAnne Besancon, Susan McCormick, Robin and Luis Ducos

Queen Tanya Brown and King Henry Brinkmann reigned over the Krewe of Dauphine Mardi Gras Deaf Ball 2015 at The Landmark Hotel.… Continue reading →

Nell Nolan: Delta Cotillion, Amistad, Impact 100 in New Orleans

Advocate staff photo by DANIEL ERATH -- Delta Sigma Theta Cotillion. Leslie Howard, Jasmyne, Judy and Marion Bracy

The New Orleans Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. held its annual cotillion at the Hyatt Regency and hailed a milestone: a half-century mark with the title “50 Years of Delta Majesty.” Turning the pages of time, sorority history reveals that the honor of… Continue reading →

New Orleans book events, Feb. 1 - March 19, 2015

'Sophia: Princess, Suffragette, Revolutionary' by Anita Anand.

“THE MARAUDERS”: 6 p.m., Garden District Book Shop, 2727 Prytania St. Tom Cooper signs and reads his work about a one-armed treasure hunter in south Louisiana and his travails and encounters. (504) 895-2266. “THE TEST — WHY OUR SCHOOLS ARE OBSESSED WITH STANDARDIZED TESTING”: 6 p.m., Octavia Books,… Continue reading →

From bachelor pad to couple's home, how this parade-friendly New Orleans house has been transformed

Advocate staff photo by SHERRI MILLER -- The Babineauxs are flanked by their dogs, Red, on the left and Obie. Red, a 16 year-old boxer mix, goes to work with Brett every day and is a celebrity in local lumber yards.

Brett Babineaux can hardly remember a time when he did not give a parade party — spontaneous or planned — at the Napoleon Avenue home he has owned since 1998. That’s because the raised-basement house he now shares with his wife, Whitney, lies on the bead-catching side of the avenue just off Magazine Street and,… Continue reading →

New LSU extension agent to teach the basics and more

Advocate staff photo by ELIOT KAMENITZ-- Lee Rouse, Assistant Extension Agent of horticulture for Orleans Parish at City Park's  Botanical Gardens in New Orleans, La. Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015.

Lee Rouse noticed something surprising when reviewing a list of courses available to home gardeners: Most were either very basic or very advanced. “I realized that there was very little right in the middle, the kind that offered information that intermediate gardeners need,” said Rouse, who assumed the mantle of Orleans Parish extension agent for the Continue reading →

Nell Nolan: Society of 1812 Ball, Victory Ball at Cabildo, Louisiana Historical Society

Three recent events hailed the 200th anniversary of the Battle of New Orleans and celebrated the peace and friendship that ensued with the United States and Great Britain. Demoiselles curtsied at the Grand Military Ball of the Society of the War of 1812 in the state of Louisiana, the Louisiana Museum Foundation presented a “Battle of… Continue reading →

New Orleans home and garden calendar, Jan. 31-Feb. 28, 2015

PROPER PRUNING: 10 a.m. to noon, Garden Study center, New Orleans Botanical Garden. “Lessons with Lee” is a series of monthly horticultural classes taught by Lee Rouse of the LSU AgCenter on timely topics. The inaugural lecture is “Proper Pruning,” which will cover techniques, timing and tools. $10 with advance registration. (504) 483-9473,… Continue reading →

Religion Bulletins for Jan. 31, 2015

BOOK DISCUSSION: 7 p.m., New Orleans Hadassah and Shir Chadash Conservative Synagogue, 3737 W. Esplanade Ave. Maggie Anton, bestselling author and scholar in Jewish women’s history will discuss “The History of Magic Throughout the World”. THEOSOPHY AND SELF-TRANSFORMATION DISCUSSION GROUP: 2 p.m., East… Continue reading →

Facets of Faith: Finding the word of God

Advocate staff photo by LEILA PITCHFORD-ENGLISH -- The Rev. Stephan Tchividjian explains to the Faith Travel Association how faith-based travel can change a person. He says he and his wife sent their 'wild child' to Africa for four months and she came back to become a champion for the people there.

An unwanted trip to the Dominican Republic changed life for Stephan Tchividjian, pastor, business leader and grandson of the Rev. Billy Graham. Tchividjian spoke about “The Power of Faith-based Travel” and led a panel discussion on growing ministry through faith-based travel during the sessions hosted by the Faith Travel Association in New Orleans recently. He explained… Continue reading →

Smiley: Tale of two Jimmies

Dear Smiley: Recent references to Jimmie Davis brought to mind the most unique day of my life, which involves a bit of Louisiana history: In Natchitoches, after a round of golf on a Saturday in 1971, I was told it was urgent that I call Rolfe McCollister Sr., Jimmie Davis’ campaign… Continue reading →

New Orleans Grammy winner Terence Blanchard scores big in new film 'Black or White'

Photo by VINCENT ISOLA -- Terence Blanchard

The latest movie score by New Orleans composer, trumpeter and Grammy-winning recording artist Terence Blanchard graces the drama “Black or White,” opening Friday. Filmed in New Orleans, “Black or White” stars Kevin Costner and Octavia Spencer. The two Oscar winners play maternal and paternal grandparents engaged in a custody fight for their… Continue reading →

Review: Standoffs between Costner, Spencer are ‘Black or White's' strong suits

Photo by TRACEY BENNETT -- Kevin Costner and Octavia Spencer star in 'Black or White.'

Star performances propel the made-in-New Orleans “Black or White.” A script that has an identity crisis, however, weighs the movie down, pulling it into messy dramedy. Kevin Costner stars as the well-meaning, well-to-do guardian of his biracial granddaughter, Eloise. Costner’s daughter, the girl’s teen mother, died in childbirth. Eloise’s absent father has been in and out… Continue reading →

Leaky plot sinks Jude Law's new submarine drama ‘Black Sea’

Photo provided by Focus FeaturesJude Law stars as Robinson, a rogue submarine captain in search of  Nazi gold  lost in the Black Sea.

Submarine movies aren’t quite a subgenre, but they do have a long history. The idea that a group of humans will go beneath the surface of the sea in a metal tube packed with complex technology and weapons of mass destruction is naturally suspenseful. “Das Boot,” the World War II-set German film from… Continue reading →

Why you need to go check out 'Force Majeure'

Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures -- Left to right, Johannes Bah Kuhnke, Lisa Loven Kongsli, Clara Wettergren and Vincent Wettergren in the clever, penetrating Swedish comedy-drama, 'Force Majeure.'

“Force Majeure,” a Golden Globe nominee for best foreign language film, is subversively funny and visually striking. Set in the French Alps, it tells a story about a family vacation that goes wrong in a most unsettling way. In Swedish writer-director Ruben Östlund’s fourth feature film, a seemingly ideal Swedish family of four takes a… Continue reading →

Little Rascals celebrates 32 years in big fashion

Alicia Perret and Aidan Brantmeier, queen and king of Little Rascals 2015

“Little Rascals Look Back At 32 Years” was the theme for the krewe’s annual ball held Thursday in the main ballroom of the Pontchartrain Center in Kenner. Presiding as captains were Misses Catherine Marie and Cecelia Zimmermann, daughters of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Michael Zimmermann. The captains’ yellow velvet costumes were highlighted with spotlight sequins, appliques… Continue reading →

Here are 3 New Orleans parades to get the party started this weekend

Advocate photo by VERONICA DOMINACH -- Grandpa Danni Pergies holds granddaughter, Chole Shreiber, 4 on his shoulders to catch some beads at the It's Five O'clock Somewhere themed Mystick Krewe of Perseus parade in Slidell, La. on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014.

SATURDAY Krewe du Vieux: Take a walk on the wild side as Krewe du Vieux roams the streets of the Faubourg Marigny, the French Quarter and the CBD for its irreverent look at life and times. 6:30 p.m.: Parade begins at Royal Street and Franklin Avenue, heads through the French Quarter and ends at the ball.… Continue reading →

Smiley: Going hog wild

“Seeing the articles about old WWL shows in New Orleans reminded me of this story,” says Ernie Gremillion: “Back in the late 1940s, WWL had a Saturday evening show called ‘The Wadda You Know’ show. “Their studio was located in the Roosevelt Hotel in downtown New Orleans. “We went often, and my dad was a contestant on… Continue reading →

Nell Nolan: Arts Council, Rivertown, Bar Association, U.S. Daughters of 1812

Advocate staff photo by DANIEL ERATH -- Arts Council Awards. Amanda Winstead, Mark Romig, Meaghan Bonavita

The Arts Council of New Orleans held its Community Arts Awards at Mardi Gras World and titled it “Celebration.” Presented by First NBC and emceed by Mark Romig, the event honored Arthur Roger, gallery owner; A Studio in the Woods, artist residency space; Hogan Jazz Archive at Tulane, the conservation of New Orleans’… Continue reading →

Food Bowl for Super Bowl Sunday

Associated Press photo by MATTHEW MEAD -- The New England Super Seven Dip is made with barbecued pulled pork topped with skillet sauteed apples and butter.

Honestly, most football fans in south Louisiana probably will be more interested in what’s on the buffet than who wins the Super Bowl Sunday. Whether you are a fan of the Seattle Seahawks or the New England Patriots — or are more interested in the Super Bowl’s television commercials — it’s a good bet you… Continue reading →

Smiley: Wedding from hell

When Fay Weilbaecher, of Covington, wrote in to announce the 55th anniversary of her marriage to husband Wayne (on Friday, Jan. 30), she included this wedding horror story to tell why “on our wedding day many years ago we were not so sure if we would make the first one. “It was the… Continue reading →

Building a legacy: Why this well-known New Orleans restaurant brand is booming

Advocate photo by J.T. BLATTY-- Paul McGoey has been charting an aggressive expansion for NOHSC Restaurant Group, which is opening a new location of its Legacy Kitchen concept inside the Renaissance Arts Hotel.

As he led a recent tour of his planned restaurant Legacy Kitchen, now under construction inside the Renaissance Arts Hotel, Paul McGoey traced a progression of different dining areas, from a counter facing the open kitchen, through a bar and lounge and out to a lobby atrium to be set with cafe tables like an indoor… Continue reading →

If you’re looking for wine advice, check out Somm’s Pick series in New Orleans

Photo provided by Commander's Palace - Dan Davis, the sommelier and resident wine

The customary way to get face time with a sommelier is well understood. Make a reservation at one of the upscale restaurants that typically employ these certified wine pros and ask for advice on your bottle of the night. However, a new program beginning next week is designed to give a different type of access to some of… Continue reading →

Feelings Cafe in Marigny to open new chapter Saturday with more changes to come

Advocate staff photo by Ian McNulty - Feelings Cafe in the Marigny is preparing to reopen with new ownership and a different menu

As Krewe du Vieux begins its parade in the Marigny this Saturday (Jan. 31), that neighborhood’s oldest restaurant will officially open a new chapter. Feelings Café (2600 Chartres St., 504-945-2222; feelingscafe.com) closed late last year, but the restaurant’s new owner plans to reopen it in phases beginning Saturday with drinks… Continue reading →

Common Ground: Teen readers to pick their top books

Photo provided by EVANGELYNN CLARK -- Scotlandville Magnet High School senior and SGA president Anthony Kenney votes Wednesday for his favorite Louisiana Teen Readers' Choice Award.

The polls don’t lie. If you think teen readers are a dying group, then it might be worth visiting Scotlandville Magnet High today when hundreds of students will cast ballots for the year’s top teen book. The 2015 Louisiana Teen Readers’ Choice Award program is fueling the excitement, said school librarian Evangelynn Clark, whose library… Continue reading →

Steven Forster’s Party Central: Art, music, dance at St. Maurice Church

Advocate photo by Steven Forster -- The art collaborative New Orleans Airlift presented a concert in St. Maurice Church by Guggenheim Award-winning composer Yotam Haber, featuring musicians Evan Conroy, Matt Eckenhoff, Craig Heinzen, Robert Nunez, Josh Paulus and Matt Wright, of the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra. The Vann Hahn Lion Dance Team from New Orleans East performed a traditional lion dance, and the event was accompanied by Taylor Lee Shepherd’s sound installation Alterpiece — 50-plus televisions placed upon a church altar to reflect sound waves. Josh Paulus, Craig Heinzen, Louie Eckhardt

The art collaborative New Orleans Airlift presented a concert in St. Maurice Church by Guggenheim Award-winning composer Yotam Haber, featuring musicians Evan Conroy, Matt Eckenhoff, Craig Heinzen, Robert Nunez, Josh Paulus and Matt Wright, of the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra. The Vann Hahn Lion Dance Team from New Orleans East performed a traditional lion dance, and… Continue reading →

Steven Forster’s Party Central: Moonlight Over Chateau fundraiser

Advocate photo by Steven Forster -- Chateau Estates Garden Club presented the Moonlight Over Chateau fundraiser to support local beautification and philanthropic projects. Among other projects, the club helps maintain local garden beds, collects fresh fruit for the Kenner Food Bank and assists the St. Elizabeth Guild, Cancer Crusaders and Angel’s Place. The elegant night included dinner and dancing and a gourmet buffet prepared by Chef Dennis Hutley. Co-Presidents Pat Golemi and Stanley Henderson, fundraiser Chairman Colleen Tassin

Chateau Estates Garden Club presented the Moonlight Over Chateau fundraiser to support local beautification and philanthropic projects. Among other projects, the club helps maintain local garden beds, collects fresh fruit for the Kenner Food Bank and assists the St. Elizabeth Guild, Cancer Crusaders and Angel’s Place. The elegant night included dinner and dancing and a… Continue reading →

Smiley: Neaux geaux zones

Richard Fossey, professor at University of Louisiana at Lafayette, wonders about reports of “no go” zones in various cities, the subject of some discussion in the news recently: “What’s the big deal? We’ve had ‘no go’ zones in south Louisiana for years; they’re called Cajun bars! “I have a friend who… Continue reading →