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A Weekend of Ideas 

It could be hard to take in the hundreds of exhibits and special displays at this week's Louisiana Home & Garden Show at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in just one day. Luckily, the show will be open from noon to 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 10, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

Tickets to the event are $9, and children 12 and younger are free. Visitors can save on admission by logging onto the Gambit Weekly Web site at, clicking on the Louisiana Home & Garden Show logo and the New Orleans date, and printing out a coupon for $2 off.

The fifth annual New Orleans area show features appearances by Andrew Dan-Jumbo, the popular carpenter of TLC's While You Were Out home makeover program. Visitors on Friday can register for a chance to win dinner with the star at Bravo's Restaurant. There will be a silent auction from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Saturday of items donated by various vendors at the show, with all proceeds benefiting Make-A-Wish Foundation. In addition, people who attend the show any of the three days can bring in a photo of their living room or den and register for a chance to win a $10,000 room makeover by the Redo Krewe, which includes designer Linda Wolford of Morland Ltd., Penny VanCamp of Bayou Lighting, Kim Pierce of Acadian Carpet, Kerri Lawless of Faux Finish Design Studio, and Billie Comeaux of American Factory Direct Furniture. Attendees also can cast a vote for their favorite local school, and the school that receives the most votes will win $1,000.

The three-day schedule is filled with more than a dozen cooking classes by local celebrity chefs, and more than a dozen seminars on subjects ranging from landscaping to interior decorating. In addition, the convention center will be filled with displays covering the gamut from appliances and kitchen tools to outdoor rooms, gardening, pet products, window coverings, home technology and much more.

"It's a wonderful show," says Rodney J. Montz of Rocket Communications, which handles marketing for the exposition. "There will be lots and lots of items you can buy at the show and take home. Friday and Saturday, we will have a wine-and-cheese party, and there will be food samplings at various booths." There's also a happy hour from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday featuring food and margaritas from WOW Wingery and Cafe.

To make it convenient for visitors, Louisiana Home & Garden Show has partnered with Harrah's casino to provide parking at the casino site and shuttles that will bring visitors to the door of the convention center.

Next year, Exciting Concepts, which presents the exposition, will hold three events in New Orleans -- spring and fall Louisiana Home & Garden Shows in the convention center and a Marketplace Expo in the Superdome -- as well as similar events in other locations on the Gulf Coast.

Getting Down to Business

U.S. Small Business Administration district director Eugene Cornelius will be the guest of honor at a reception from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 8 at Polynesian Joe's (809 Magazine St.). The reception will include refreshments and entertainment.

click to enlarge Louisiana Home & Garden Show's celebrity guest Andrew Dan-Jumbo, the carpenter on TLC's popular While You Were Out television program, signs autographs for fans at an earlier home and garden expo.
  • Louisiana Home & Garden Show's celebrity guest Andrew Dan-Jumbo, the carpenter on TLC's popular While You Were Out television program, signs autographs for fans at an earlier home and garden expo.
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