Weekend Picks: The holidays are here already!

That's right, we've got a week left until Thanksgiving and the holidays are here!

by Mary Staes
November 21, 2019

That’s right, we’ve got a week left until Thanksgiving and the holidays are here!

Here are our weekend picks for kicking off your holiday season:

Fri. Nov. 22, 2019

What: French Market Tree Lighting Ceremony
When: 5-7 p.m.
Where: Washington Artillery Park across from Jackson Square
Price: Free

Kick off the holiday season in the French Quarter with the lighting of the tree across from Jackson Square. Festivities start at 5 p.m. with entertainment from the National Park Service Arrowhead Jazz Band and a performance by the Heritage School of Music before the official lighting at 7 p.m. Click here for more details.

Washington Artillery Park
Getting there
768 Decatur St, New Orleans, LA 70116, USA
Mon-Sun Open 24 hours
Photo courtesy HNOC

What: Crescent City Sport opening reception
When: 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Where: The Historic New Orleans Collection
Price: Free

“Crescent City Sport: Stories of Courage and Change” tells 20 tales of athletic prowess that have shaped our local community on and off the field. The stories include the first women to play at the New Orleans Lawn Tennis Club, the formation and integration of the Sugar Bowl, and New Orleans Saints’ return after Hurricane Katrina. There will also be narratives from rowing, sailing, boxing, baseball, basketball, roller derby, horse racing, and cycling, all of which have played a part in New Orleans’s history since the Civil War. Click here for more information.

The Historic New Orleans Collection
Getting there
520 Royal St, New Orleans, LA 70130, USA
Mon Closed
Tue-Sat 9:30am–4:30pm
Sun 10:30am–4:30pm
More Info

Sat. Nov. 23, 2019

NEW ORLEANS, LA –  Percussionist Luther Gray leads the ritual drumming at sunrise in celebration of the first annual International Jazz Day at Congo Square in Armstrong Park. (Photo by Skip Bolen/WireImage for Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz)

What: Congo Square 30th Anniversary Celebration & Fundraiser
When: 6-10 p.m.
Where: Ashe’ CAC
Price: $30

Drummers, dancers, a drum ensemble, food, photographers and artists will be showcasing their work at this celebration of one of New Orleans’ most historical sites. Click here for more information. 

Ashé Cultural Arts Center
Getting there
1712 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd, New Orleans, LA 70113, USA
Mon-Sat 10am–6pm
Sun Closed
More Info
(Photo by Josh Brasted/Getty Images)

What: Jingle Bells and Beer: Celebration in the Oaks
When: 7-10 p.m.
Where: New Orleans City Park
Price: $40

Get to see the lights at City Park before Celebration in the Oaks opens to the public at this adults-only party. Guests can experience all the rides within City Park’s Carousel Gardens Amusement Park, under the beautiful lights of Celebration in the Oaks. Domestic and craft beers will be available to sample throughout the amusement park. Bonus points if you wear your favorite ugly Christmas sweater. Click here for tickets. 

Carousel Gardens Amusement Park
Getting there
7 Victory Ave, New Orleans, LA 70124, USA
Mon-Fri Closed
Sat-Sun 11am–6pm
More Info

Sun. Nov. 24, 2019

What: Draw-a-thon 2019
When: ends at 6:30 a.m.
Where: the Green Project
Price: Free

You’ll have to get up early for this one! This annual event starts 6:30 a.m. Saturday and ends 24-hours later on Sunday. Visitors can come and go at any time, draw on the walls and floor which are covered with paper and cardboard or participate in one of the many artist led workshops held throughout the day. Draw-a-Thon’s drawing-centered workshops are designed for participants of any skill level and include bookmaking, mailable art, recycled paper making, screen printing, interactive sculptures created from repurposed materials, a live figure drawing workshop, animation, drawing game shows, drawing karaoke, and the signature Draw-a-Tron 3000, a machine that can draw anything you want. Click here for more information. 

The Green Project
Getting there
2831 Marais St, New Orleans, LA 70117, USA
Mon-Tue Closed
Wed-Sat 11am–5pm
Sun Closed
More Info

What: St. Catherine’s Day Hat Parade
When: 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Where: Pleasant Street and St. Charles Avenue
Price: Free

In Paris, women celebrate St. Catherine’s Day by donning hats, drinking champagne and parading in the street. We’re good at all those things in New Orleans, so the St. Catherine’s Day Hat Parade is a natural. The parade is open to women and girls of all ages; men and boys are, as always, welcome to tag along. Click here for more information. 

Saint Charles Avenue & Pleasant Street
Getting there
St Charles Ave & Pleasant St, New Orleans, LA 70115, USA

Mary Staes is Digital Content Lead for Very Local. She works with our freelancers and crafts content for our social media platforms and website. Before Very Local, she worked with CBS affiliate WWL-TV as a web producer and weekend assignment editor for about 4 years. She has also handled broadcast coverage for 160 Marine Reserve training facilities while she served as an active duty Marine. As a native New Orleanian, she takes being "very local" to heart. She loves being intertwined with the culture and figuring out how there are less than two degrees of separation between us all, whether...

More Local Stories

Eat Play Stay Orlando: Sanford

On this episode of Eat Play Stay Orlando explore what’s new in the Northern part of town. Sanford has a plethora of breweries, bars, and delicious dining options to choose from.

Hometown Tragedy: The Pike County Massacre

On this episode of Hometown Tragedy: Missing in Milwaukee, we’ll explore what happened to Jerica Banks, her children, and how it impacted their community.

Six New Orleans parks that are perfect locations to celebrate 4th of July

Head to one of these six New Orleans parks to celebrate Independence Day in the city.

Cheap Date Orlando: Punk Rock & Pooches

Two Orlando couples shop vintage, search for the perfect slice, visit a post-apocalyptic saloon, and take the stage on blind dates in Orlando.

Fit and Fab: Free summer workouts in Boston

Cover photo courtesy Getty Images Looking to get fit for the summer? Still wary of COVID-19 or just looking for some sunshine while you sweat? Here are some Boston free summer workouts across the city so you can keep moving all season long! Seaport Sweat May 2 to Sept. 29 Boston’s biggest free workout series…

What’s On the Menu?: Farm-to-table

The farm-to-table movement brings locally grown foods to your plate. Not only will enjoying farm-to-table meals allow you to indulge in fresh, nutritional, seasonal dishes, but farm-to-table dining helps the environment and supports the local economy.  Check out these delicious farm-to-table restaurants in Greenville, South Carolina on the latest episode of What’s On the Menu?. …

A guide to some of the best Black-owned brunch spots in NOLA

Gather the crew together, make those reservations, and celebrate all things Black at brunch. 

A guide to Pittsburgh’s summer events must-do list

Check out our roundup below for the can’t-miss events happening in the city over the next few months.

Eat Play Stay Orlando: Tarpon Springs

In historic Ybor City, different cultures bring out the best in one another. Enjoy an authentic Cuban sandwich or dine at a restaurant now on its fifth generation of ownership. After chicken yoga (yes, that’s a thing!), treat yourself to a hand-rolled cigar.

Dorchester doughnuts that pack a paczki

These traditional Polish pastries are the real deal.

Chef Dee Lavigne expands the only Black-owned cooking school in New Orleans

Deelightful Roux School of Cooking is the only African American-owned cooking school taught by a New Orleans native, and her class is a guide to New Orleans’ food culture.

At New Orleans’ Hogs for the Cause festival, the cause is front and center

The two-day barbecue and music event is a celebration of the year-round efforts made by more than 90 competing teams. Those teams raise financial aid for families whose children are being treated for pediatric brain cancer. 

Pelicans new ‘Won’t Bow Down’ promo video puts culture front court

The Pelicans new promo video for it’s “Won’t Bow Down” tagline is an exhilarating high energy collaboration that places the emphasis squarely on local talent and deeply rooted culture, featuring a beat from Mannie Fresh, Dee-1, and Black Masking Indians who coined the phrase the Pelicans use during games.

UrSol The Chanter

urSol the Chanter – Jim Henson’s Mysterious Gift to Pittsburgh

Did you know that urSol The Chanter from the 1982 film “The Dark Crystal” is part of the permanent collection at the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh?