New Orleans' Shaya 2016 James Beard Award Winner | Forbes @karlaalindahao


The good times are rolling at New Orleans with the announcement of this year’s James Beard Awards. At the gala held Monday night in Chicago, Chef Alon Shaya’s namesake restaurant Shaya (in the Crescent City’s Garden District) won “Best New Restaurant” and Justin Devillier of La Petite Grocery, which is just across the street was named “Best Chef: South.” The James Beard Foundation also honored Leah Chase—matriarch of New Orleans’ legendary Dooky Chase’s Restaurant—with the “Lifetime Achievement Award.”

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New Orleans is officially a hipster hot spot | New York Post

New Orleans has long been famous for its centuries-old voodoo culture, historic bed and breakfasts, Cajun food, ghost tours and, of course, Mardi Gras. But now, there’s contemporary Israeli cuisine, locally grown kombucha and a Warby Parker. Arcade Fire is leading parades, and hip hotels like Ace and Virgin are moving in.

The biggest indication of a hipster-focused renaissance is in the Bywater District, a formerly rough neighborhood that’s become the East Village of New Orleans. Joining famed BBQ eatery The Joint and Southern standby Elizabeth’s are sidewalk cafes, yoga studios and trendy restaurants like The Franklin and Red’s Chinese, the latter opened by an alum of Mission Chinese in NYC and San Francisco. A new independent cinema, high-end hotel Stateside and luxury condos are in the works, and the public streetcar system is expanding here by this fall due to demand.

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Termites start swarming in New Orleans area; Baton Rouge could be next | The Advocate

A major swarm of wood-eating termites emerged from nests across the New Orleans area Monday night, swirling around lampposts, well-lit homes and trees and kicking off what is many New Orleanians’ least favorite season.


One expert said Tuesday that Baton Rouge could soon see its heaviest infestation ever.

Monday’s muggy conditions followed a weekend of heavy New Orleans rains, which are ideal for the moisture-loving Formosan subterranean termites, widely considered to be the most destructive variety.

Formosans, native to East Asia, were introduced to the U.S. mainland in the 1940s and ’50s through crates and cargo crossing the Pacific Ocean during and after World War II.

Military ships transported them locally to Camp Leroy Johnson — now the University of New Orleans’ East Campus — and the Algiers Naval Support Activity, from where they spread rapidly.

Formosans may reach an average of 10 million per colony, while native termites’ colonies number in the hundreds of thousands.

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Cutting edge surgery offering Gulf Coast families new hope | WDSU


New Orleans is one of just 13 cities across the country offering a surgery that repairs spina bifida while the baby is still in the womb. Traditionally, procedures for spina bifida happen after a child is born, but the team of doctors at Ochsner conduct the fetal surgery while a mother is 20-26 weeks pregnant, repairing the nerves of the baby's spine and freeing the spinal cord.

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Massive sinkhole develops on Canal Street in downtown New Orleans | WDSU


A massive sinkhole swallowed a large portion of Canal Street in downtown New Orleans. It's the second sinkhole to develop in as many days. The first sinkhole developed Thursday near the intersection of Constantinople and Tchoupitoulas streets in Uptown New Orleans.

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US seeks outside control for troubled New Orleans jail | U.S. News & World Report


The Justice Department asked a federal court to appoint a third party to operate the long-troubled New Orleans jail, saying new leadership is essential because the city's sheriff has for years failed to improve conditions that endanger inmates.

The government, which was joined in the filing Monday by lawyers for inmates, also sought to place Sheriff Marlin Gusman in contempt over what it called his noncompliance with overhauls mandated in a settlement agreement involving the jail and the Justice Department and inmates. Gusman has repeatedly said he is making progress and faulted the city for not providing enough money.

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Prince 'Purple Rain Day' second line memorial parade in New Orleans | NOLA.com


A pair of white draft horses pulled a purple-draped casket atop a caisson, with a cluster of grape-like purple balloons bobbing above.  It was the symbolic centerpiece of the "Purple Rain Day" second line parade that took place in the Treme neighborhood of New Orleans on Monday (April 25) in memory of pop superstar Prince, who died Thursday.

Celebrants danced, drank and found friends in the crowd. Someone completely unfamiliar with the 1980s icon would have immediately surmised the late singer's signature color, from the feather boas, wigs, hats and other accoutrement...



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Prince second-line: PETA urges no doves


This evening's Prince second line has a few minor tweaks.

The planned release of doves before the second-line is canceled at the urging of PETA.  Prince was a huge supporter of PETA and a vegan-general animal advocate overall. Instead of a dove release, organizers are thinking of a poetry readings or purple confetti.

The start time has moved to 6 p.m. from 5:30 p.m.

DJ Captain Charles will be spinning at Ooh Poo Pah Doo Bar. James Andrews and the Crescent City Allstars will play.
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Hundreds of thousands of Jazz Fest fans equals hundreds of millions of dollars spent in the city | WDSU


Music fans are making camp in New Orleans this week for the 47th annual Jazz Fest, presented by Shell. In 2015, over 460,000 festival fans packed the fairgrounds for Jazz Fest. With the great weather we've had this weekend, 2016 may bring in even more. And the sea of people is bringing in a wave of green.

“We are talking about an economic impact of well over $300 million,” said Mark Romig, president and CEO of New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corp. “You’ve got great weather. You’ve got great music, great food, great art, and it's just one of those mainstays of our economic calendar for the year.”

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