Most residents understand that New Orleans is defined by our neighborhoods. Celebrating these neighborhoods and enriching the quality of life in each unique area contributes positively to our city as a whole.

Recently, members of the Faubourg St. John Neighborhood Association gathered for the group’s fourth annual Porch Crawl. FSJNA organized the popular event as a fundraiser to build a swing set for Desmare Playground. Located at 3456 Esplanade Ave., the park is a popular destination for families with young children, and the organization is on a mission to outfit it with a brand new play set.

“We are about one-third of way there,” said FSJNA board member Linda Landesberg. “Monies raised from today’s Porch Crawl will go toward the swing set.”

Desmare Playground has undergone several stages of transformation over the years. The spot is a lovely little playground so worthy of improvement efforts by FSJNA members and Faubourg St. John residents. As of this past weekend, FSJNA reports that fundraising events such as the Porch Crawl have been the primary revenue source for the park.

It seems as though this particular initiative could use some support from an area business or benevolent corporate donor to move things along faster in time for the kids to enjoy it for the summer months.

This year’s Porch Crawl featured six beautiful homes and porches, all within easy walking distance of each other. At every stop on the tour, patrons enjoyed food from area restaurants and assorted libations to wash it all down with.

The Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, Café Degas, Santa Fe, Lola’s and Liuzza’s by the Track were just some of the eateries that participated. Glazer’s Distributors provided the spirits. Finally, because it just isn’t a party without music in this town, James Andrews and his band kept the crowd dancing in the streets for what turned out to be a perfect way to spend a Saturday evening.

Faubourg St. John dates back to 1708. Today, the area is home to more than 4,000 residents. To learn more about this unique New Orleans neighborhood, just take a stroll down Esplanade Avenue or go to for details on future events that you and your family can enjoy.

La Vie de Ville captures city life New Orleans style every Thursday in The New Orleans Advocate’s Community News section. For coverage of your community event, please send details in advance to Photos and story by Roberta Grove.