Cafe Hope (1101 Barataria Blvd., Marrero; 504-756-4673; www.cafehope.org) and crawfish spice giant Zatarain's hold the second annual Local Food Fest May 17 at the West Bank cafe's outdoor garden.
The event runs from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and includes dishes from more than 20 New Orleans restaurants and food purveyors, including Coquette, Boucherie, St. James Cheese Company, Humble Bagel and others. Craft beers and soft drinks will be sold, and there will be live music from Los Poboycitos, Michael Liuzza and Co. and Soul Creole. A car show includes more than 50 vehicles from local auto clubs, and there's a petting zoo, face-painting and kids' activities.
Admission is free, and proceeds from food and beverage sales benefit Cafe Hope, a 16-week program for at-risk youth that provides training in the culinary arts and teaches valuable life skills. Students in the program are encouraged to cook with local and sustainable ingredients, sourcing produce from a host of local farms and community gardens.
"Local Food Fest is a time to celebrate the importance of locally and sustainably produced food, while also spreading awareness of Cafe Hope's mission," says Cafe Hope Executive Director Luis Arocha.