New Orleans Life

Saturday, June 17, 2017

New Orleans mayoral candidates Bagneris and Cantrell discuss minimum wage, law enforcement

Posted By on Sat, Jun 17, 2017 at 3:35 PM

LaToya Cantrell and Michael Bagneris fielded questions from progressive group Indivisible NOLA.
  • LaToya Cantrell and Michael Bagneris fielded questions from progressive group Indivisible NOLA.

New Orleans mayoral candidates Michael Bagneris and LaToya Cantrell found a lot of common ground at a forum hosted by progressive group Indivisible NOLA, broadly covering wage inequity, immigration, racial justice, homelessness, substance abuse and mental health services, among other issues. Another announced candidate, Civil District Court Judge Desiree Charbonnet, also was invited to the forum but had to drop out due to a scheduling conflict. But the invitation-only event was this year's candidates' first large public introductions before qualifying begins.

Candidates sat in front of an orange Black Lives Matter banner at First Unitarian Universalist Church at Jefferson and Claiborne avenues June 17, fielding questions from event moderators, Indivisible members and members of the roughly 300 people in attendance.

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Tuesday, June 13, 2017

'Mid Mod NOLA' tours and lectures to spotlight New Orleans' Mid-Century Modern architecture

Posted By on Tue, Jun 13, 2017 at 4:16 PM

The Automotive Life Insurance Building on Canal Street (now the Mid-City branch of the New Orleans Public Library) is a prime example of New Orleans' Mid-Century Modern architecture. - PHOTO BY KEVIN ALLMAN
  • The Automotive Life Insurance Building on Canal Street (now the Mid-City branch of the New Orleans Public Library) is a prime example of New Orleans' Mid-Century Modern architecture.

While Chicago and Palm Springs, California are both renowned for their Mid-Century Modern architecture, New Orleans has more than a few examples of that classic design. This summer, the New Orleans Architecture Foundation (NOAF), the Preservation Resource Center (PRC) and DOCOMOMO/NOLA are presenting tours and discussions dedicated to local Mid-Century Modern buildings.

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Monday, June 12, 2017

Y@ Speaks: The Return

Posted By on Mon, Jun 12, 2017 at 6:25 PM

After being trapped in the Black Lodge where no tweet can be read or written unless it's backwards and yelling at me, Y@ Speak is back (after a long time! sorry!) to document another week's worth of nightmares committed to online permanence. Also this week: The state Legislature is a fantastic mess, as always, and Margaret Orr had a great time at Pride.

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Friday, June 9, 2017

During Pride month, a look back at one of the first gay rights protests in New Orleans

Posted By on Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 11:00 AM


In this week's Gambit, we celebrated the LGBT community with a calendar of this weekend's Pride events, discussions of LGBT theater projects and a drag workshop. But as we were working on this issue, we wanted to learn more about how far the battle for LGBT rights has come. So we took a look back at what newspapers had to say during the first glimmers of gay activism in the city.

One of the earliest reports we found: the Gay Liberation Front's (GLF's) first major march on City Hall, which took place January 23, 1971.

"Gay liberation arrived today in New Orleans," wrote reporter William H. Adler, in a page-one The States-Item story that ran that morning. For Adler's story — a slim 425 words — he spoke to several demonstrators, who planned to march that day to condemn a spate of arrests and alleged harassment of the gay community by the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD).

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Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Groups blast city's chronic potholes at rally for infrastructure

Posted By on Wed, May 31, 2017 at 6:06 PM

Participants (cautiously) gathered near this Lakeview pothole.
  • Participants (cautiously) gathered near this Lakeview pothole.

In Lakeview, the otherwise-manicured neighborhood where potholes that could swallow an ice cream truck yawn, a small group gathered Wednesday to call for a permanent fix for the streets and dramatic investments in the city's infrastructure.

About 20 people convened at the corner of Florida Boulevard and Rosemary Place to speak out at the edge of a particularly nasty pothole, whose jagged planes and crevasse-like depth seemed to suggest a recent tectonic shift. They banged pots and pans, chanted ("From Lakeview, to 9th Ward, we don't want no potholes!") and held up signs depicting some of the city's more egregious potholes, including sites in Uptown, the 7th Ward and Mid-City.

"I'm on these roads 8-10 hours a day. ... I know how bad these New Orleans city streets are," said Suzanne Oneill, a local cabdriver. "What we need is for our tax dollars to come back to our neighborhoods."

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Saturday, May 27, 2017

FitLot, a community fitness center on the Lafitte Greenway

Posted By on Sat, May 27, 2017 at 9:00 AM

The FitLot is an outdoor fitness facility that's open to the public and free of charge. - PHOTO BY KATHERINE M. JOHNSON
  • Photo by Katherine M. Johnson
  • The FitLot is an outdoor fitness facility that's open to the public and free of charge.

Adam Mejerson was struck with an idea while walking on the boardwalk in Tel Aviv.

The boardwalk was full of the usual suspects: wandering tourists and joggers, but what was unusual about these joggers is that every few hundred feet or so, they would stop at a fitness station to do a quick workout before continuing to run.

Mejerson, who grew up in a household where his exercise physiologist father trained clients in their home, and who’s no stranger to fitness himself, having worked as a personal trainer and group fitness instructor, had a thought.

“Other cities in other countries have spaces like (this) throughout the city so that everybody who wants it has access (to training equipment),” he says. “We took that as an example and designed our own park.”

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Thursday, May 25, 2017

After 13 years, DJ Soul Sister closes out her weekly Saturday night dance party

Posted By on Thu, May 25, 2017 at 4:30 PM

DJ Soul Sister's weekly Hustle dance party at Hi-Ho Lounge ends May 27.
  • DJ Soul Sister's weekly Hustle dance party at Hi-Ho Lounge ends May 27.
After more than a decade of dance parties set to rare groove and addictive funk and soul pulled from a seemingly infinite stash of vinyl records, DJ Soul Sister's popular Saturday night dance party will no longer be held on a weekly basis.

"I might change my mind in a couple years, but right now, every Saturday is out," she says. "I'm not afraid of change and this is what it is."

Hustle — Melissa Weber's nearly 13-year-old Saturday night dance party — will hold its last weekly edition May 27 with guest DJ Mannie Fresh. It's also the show's 13th anniversary. "Now it's going to be serving two purposes," Weber says.

Hustle will return as a semi-regular event, beginning 11 p.m. Saturday, June 24 at The Orpheum Theater's below-ground space The Ice Pit. Weber also will preside over a monthly "Soulful Takeover" show beginning Friday, July 7 at One Eyed Jacks.

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Monday, May 22, 2017

Y@ Speak: taking them down, part 4

Posted By on Mon, May 22, 2017 at 7:00 PM

Festival season is in full swing as hundreds of people gathered to listen to brass bands, dance, drink beer and watch cranes lift monuments to Confederate generals from their pedestals. Also this week: graduation time and twerking Mickey Mouse.

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'Know Your Rights' ACLU workshop May 25 provides training for interacting with police

Posted By on Mon, May 22, 2017 at 2:00 PM


On May 25, ACLU hosts a workshop at New Orleans Public Library's Alvar branch about interacting with authorities. Participants' questions will guide a short tutorial from ACLU organizers about one's legal and constitutional rights when engaging with police and similar authority figures, such as Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE). It's a workshop which could be useful for political activists of all stripes, people with criminal records, people who previously have had contentious interactions with cops, members of historically marginalized communities and others.

ACLU also publishes a list of resources regarding one's rights in several scenarios, such as the right to take photos in various situations, youth rights when dealing with police, rights in the face of voter intimidation and a host of other topics.

The workshop takes place at 6 p.m. Thursday; it's designed for adults but teens are welcome to participate. It's free to attend.

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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Beauregard monument is removed from pedestal outside City Park

Posted By on Wed, May 17, 2017 at 4:51 AM

A monument fo P.G.T. Beauregard is removed early May 17. - PHOTO BY ALEX WOODWARD
  • A monument fo P.G.T. Beauregard is removed early May 17.

The peripheral block party scene at Confederate-era monument removals and demonstrations has become a nearly-weekly ritual. During the seven-hour stretch from when removal crews arrived and when a statue of Confederate Gen. P.G.T. Beauregard was lifted from its pedestal outside City Park, people kayaked on Bayou St. John to get a closer look, pulled up beach chairs along the water, popped Champagne, brought beer and coolers, and then a brass band showed up.

The New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) separated the crowd with a series of barricades at Moss Street and Esplanade Avenue facing Beauregard. Barricades stretched from across the bridge down Esplanade in front of the Shell gas station on Moss, with more around City Park, stretching across Carrollton Avenue. On one side of Esplanade were a couple dozen monument supporters, who draped Confederate flags over the barricades and waved several others, including a half-Stars and Stripes and half-Confederate flag, a flag that said "President Trump," and two flags symbolizing the 3 Percenters. Supporters chanted "where's Mitch?"

A saw cut into the statue's base where it meets the pedestal as crews hovered above in cherry pickers to strap Beauregard to a crane using yellow straps.

Among people in the crowd: musicians Terrence Blanchard and Nicholas Payton, as well as Angela Kinlaw, Michael "Quess" Moore and Malcolm Suber with Take 'Em Down NOLA.

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