Day of Service to mark Katrina anniversary

On Aug. 29, the 10th anniversary of the day Hurricane Katrina came ashore, Mayor Mitch Landrieu and the city of New Orleans, with the support of Wal-Mart, will host a unique service initiative.

From Aug. 22 to Aug. 29, the city will encourage participation in service projects and spotlight examples of volunteerism across New Orleans neighborhoods. This effort will culminate on Aug. 29, a Saturday, with a Citywide Day of Service in conjunction with more than 100 partner organizations.

The city and its partners and sponsors hope to engage 10,000 volunteers throughout the week. Nonprofit, neighborhood, faith-based and educational organizations will host nearly 100 service projects focusing on these neighborhoods: Central City, 7th Ward/Treme, Lake Area/Gentilly, Florida/Desire, Lower 9th Ward, New Orleans East and Algiers. Throughout the week, other areas around the city will also host volunteer projects and special events.

“Over the past 10 years, volunteers from down the street and around the world have contributed millions of hours to help New Orleans build back better than before,” Landrieu said. “It’s been faith-based groups, college students, corporations, individual residents and countless others facilitating our recovery.”

Landrieu said he wanted to thank all the volunteers, “and I am very excited that sponsors, partners and community members will come together on Aug. 29 to demonstrate the spirit of service that has defined our recovery and will guide our future.”

The Citywide Day of Service is open to volunteers of all ages, backgrounds and levels of experience. Volunteers can sign up for a wide range of projects including renovating, building, cleaning, painting, planting, canvassing and training. All registered volunteers will receive a T-shirt and special seating at the Power of Community public anniversary event at 5 p.m. Aug. 29 at the Smoothie King Center.

For information on every project and sign-up instructions, visit www.katrina10.org/serve.

To better coordinate activities, organizers will create regional hubs to be announced in coming weeks. In addition to the service activities, each of these hubs will also host a health, wellness and opportunity fair where the city and local organizations will share more information with residents about community resources.

Anyone who does not register before the event can register onsite from 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. Aug. 29. All registered volunteers must check in at their regional hubs between 7:30 a.m. and 8:30 a.m.

Projects will start at 8:30 a.m. and conclude at 12:30 p.m. Wrap-up parties with lunch, entertainment and guest speakers will occur at the regional hubs at 1 p.m.

610 Stompers to hold auditions next weekend

New Orleans’ all-male dance team, the 610 Stompers, will hold auditions Aug. 15 and 16, a Saturday and Sunday, at The Maison, 508 Frenchmen St.

Registration will open at 11 a.m. both days, and auditions will last until 7 p.m. Auditions are open to all men 21 and older.

The public is invited to watch the auditions for a $10 donation while enjoying beer specials.

All men who can learn a dance routine, add their own flavor and show some panache are invited to try out to be a member of the “ordinary dance group with extraordinary moves.”

Round 1 auditions will include 50 dancers each day. Spots are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Numbers 1-50 will be assigned upon arrival. If participants don’t make it on Saturday, they are encouraged to try again Sunday. Participants must register and audition on the same day.

Once registered, all applicants will be given time to learn a dance routine and must be able to answer a few questions. Chosen participants will be offered a slot in the callbacks on Aug. 23.

The 610 Stompers are a nonprofit organization and perform in dozens of events hosted by nonprofits throughout the year. Therefore, potential Stompers should be ready to donate time to fans.

The 610 Stompers were born in 2009 as the Saints began their march to the Super Bowl. The 2015 “class” will be the seventh edition of the group.

For more information, visit www.610stompers.com.