Area protesters to participate in Women’s March on D.C. 

So they went to the French Market, bought handbags of the proper size, decorated them and then improvised eye-catching signs or flags they can raise on telescoped cardboard poles to find one another if cellphone towers become overwhelmed by Saturday’s crowd.

The group’s colors are purple and silver.

Purple stands for justice, they said, and silver stands for the silver lining they see in the relationships they’ve formed through the protest – even though the march was prompted by concerns that a Trump administration could damage the rights of women and other historically marginalized groups.

Area protesters to participate in Women’s March on D.C. – Advocate

Pralines (PRAW-leens) Are More Than Just Candy 

This Eater  story is pretty good, but could use a little more context outside of the French Quarter tourist angle. Still, I am so very glad that Knapp included Rien Fertel’s analysis and research.

As a past farmers market organizer, I can tell you that the praline biz extends past the Quarter to thousands of locals who search for a particular variety that they grew up with: some look for a creamy taste, others want lots of chopped nuts and others need the sugar-free type. Most New Orleanians expect to find middle-aged African-American women as the chef behind the treat, although the Crescent City Farmers Market has most recently had genial Wayne Brown and his momma’s Crescent Creams pralines along with his of the old-timey “Nipples of Venus” concoction. Other vendors of pralines at CCFM include or have included the (white) family member of market fishing family Gerica Seafood who makes some tasty sweet treats based on a hundred-year old recipe from Raceland, and school bus driver Betty Walker who hails from New Orleans East, which remains one area of town where the homemade candies can be found on counters of all types of stores.


Available at farmers market frequented by locals, at Broadway Ave and the River on a recent Tuesday. Pralines are NOT just for tourists.


Additionally, the dozens of varieties sold only through churches or a daughter’s office to this day also show the resilience and creativity of this local cottage industry.

Check out this wonderful piece that covers the “mammy” stuff that Rien alludes to; that crap certainly has denigrated the art of praline making which should be deeply respected and widely encouraged.





Writers Resist New Orleans

Writers Resist New Orleans is being held in collaboration with PEN America, as part of a international day of readings championing freedom of speech, and the power of expression to change the world.

Representatives from New Orleans’ diverse writer’s community will be reading selections from great political, activist, and literary works of our past including words from:

Martin Luther King, Jr
James Baldwin
Audre Lorde
Allen Ginsberg
Angela Davis

and many more to come.

We hope to provide a space for the New Orleans community to come together during this time of national anxiety. We view this as an opportunity to connect, seek solace, and rebuild. We welcome ALL.

A note from the national organizers:
Writers Resist is not affiliated with a political party. We wish to bypass direct political discourse in favor of an inspired focus on the future, and how we, as writers, can be a unifying force for the protection of Democracy. In order for us to heal and move forward, individually and as a nation, we believe people need something to be for in this anxious moment. The only thing we “resist” is that which attacks or seeks to undermine those most basic principles of freedom and justice for all.

Norwegian Seamen’s Church becomes Jazz Church

Finally some good news in the city! Their annual Scandinavian Festival is a delight; I’m certainly going to try to get to more events here to support this idea.

(The coming year will be an important test of the new concept. If, by mid-2018, it becomes clear that the newly configured church and cultural center isn’t viable, the local board will be released from its commitment and the Church of Norway will put the church up for sale.)

This past summer, it looked like the Norwegian Seamen’s Church would be shuttered for good. If all goes as planned, the New Orleans church will officially become the Scandinavian Jazz Church on Feb. 1.

According to the plan, the church complex will serve as a home base for people of Scandinavian heritage. But it also will reach out to New Orleanians of all heritages by hosting concerts and expanding upon the church’s rich history with the city’s jazz community.

Jazz Church

Treme volunteers needed

St. Anna’s church located on Esplanade Ave. has been slowly trying to get the “Dodwell House” at 1519 Esplanade house cleaned up in order to host a fundraiser. The goal is to renovate the property to become a school and community center for the neighborhood. There is a lot of work to be done and a lot of money to be raised. Next Saturday, January 21st at 10:00 AM, we will be hauling trash and cleaning surfaces and are in desperate need of some volunteers to assist with this effort. Please help spread the word. You can visit to learn more about the vision for the historic property.



Healthy Homes Hearing


Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center


New Orleanians are paying far more than we can afford in rent, and too often we’re not getting what we pay for. One tenant Southeast Louisiana Legal Services assisted is a mother whose daughter fell through their termite-infested floor. Thousands of other families deal with mold, leaks, rats, and other hazards in their homes on a daily basis, with no way to hold their slumlords accountable.

After years of advocacy, City Council hearings, and countless stories in the press, the New Orleans City Council recently introduced an ordinance to improve these conditions. It would set up a system for receiving complaints and require periodic inspections of rental homes.

The first hearing for this ordinance is January 18th at 2pm at the City Council Community Development Committee.

It’s critical to have a strong presence at the meeting to ensure Council knows that all renters deserve safe and healthy homes because no one deserves to live in a home that makes them sick. We hope to see you there.

Guidebooks to Sin

Join THNOC on Friday, February 3, for the release of Guidebooks to Sin: The Blue Books of Storyville, New Orleans by Pamela D. Arceneaux. Between 1897 and 1917, a legal red-light district thrived at the edge of the French Quarter, helping establish the notorious reputation that adheres to New Orleans today. Though many scholars have written about Storyville, no thorough contemporary study of the blue books–directories of the neighborhood’s prostitutes, featuring advertisements for liquor, brothels, and other goods and services–has been available until now.
Arceneaux’s examination of these rare guides invites readers into a version of Storyville created by its own entrepreneurs. A foreword by the historian Emily Epstein Landau places the blue books in the context of their time, concurrent with the rise of American consumer culture and modern advertising. Illustrated with hundreds of facsimile pages from the blue books in THNOC’s holdings, Guidebooks to Sin illuminates the intersection of race, commerce, and sex in this essential chapter of New Orleans history.
The book, which retails for $50, will be available for purchase at The Shop at The Collection, local independent bookstores, and national online retailers beginning Friday, February 3. The book release event is free and open to the public. Registration is required. Email or call (504) 523-4662 to make reservations.
Friday, February 3

5:30 – 6:30 p.m.: Lecture with
Pamela D. Arceneaux, THNOC senior librarian/rare books curator, at the
Queen Anne Ballroom, Hotel Monteleone, 214 Royal Street
6:30 – 8 p.m.: Reception and book signing
The Historic New Orleans Collection
533 Royal Street
Admission is free, but reservations are required. Email or call (504) 523-4662 to make reservations.
The Historic New Orleans Collection presents
February 4, 2017
Hotel Monteleone, 214 Royal Street
Registration is required to attend the symposium, and early registration is available through Friday, January 13, with rates ranging between $40 and $75. Rates will increase to $50 – $85 on Saturday, January 14, and registration will remain open as long as space is available. Register online or call (504) 523-4662 to register via telephone.
Though the citizens of New Orleans may not have known it at the time, the year 1917 was a pivotal moment in the city’s history. The first jazz recording, “Livery Stable Blues,” was released, and Storyville, the famed red-light district, closed. One hundred years later, the 2017 Williams Research Center Symposium, Storyville and Jazz, 1917: An End and a Beginning, examines the ways in which the neighborhood and the musical movement have shaped perceptions of New Orleans around the world. A schedule of talks is available online. Early registration is available through Friday, January 13.
The 22nd annual Williams Research Center Symposium is presented by The Historic New Orleans Collection with support from Hotel Monteleone and ClearBridge Advisors, Inc. Additional support is provided by St. Denis J. Villere & Co.; Becker Suffern McLanahan, Ltd.; AOS Interior Environments; Baptist Community Ministries; Bywater Woodworks, Inc.; Exterior Designs, Inc.; Milling Benson Woodward, LLP; Waggonner & Ball Architects; New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau; New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation; Premium Parking; and Solaris Garage.