Parish Lines: Festival puts oysters in spotlight _lowres

Photo provided by the Violet Oyster Festival committee - Volunteers shuck oysters at last year’s Violet Oyster Festival. Sponsored by Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, this year’s event will take place Friday through Sunday, Oct. 17-19, on the grounds of Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, 2621 Colonial Blvd., Violet.

Oyster lovers will have a chance to taste the delicacy every way imaginable this weekend when the Violet Oyster Festival celebrates its 30th anniversary.

Set for Friday through Sunday, Oct. 17-19, on the grounds of Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, 2621 Colonial Blvd., Violet, the festival will feature both raw and chargrilled on the half shell, fried to a crispy golden perfection for consumption on po-boys and inside fritters and marinated in gumbo and fettuccine dishes. The menu also will include jambalaya, pizza, onion mums, hot dogs, hamburgers, nachos, sweets, daiquiris, funnel cakes and snoballs.

Fair hours are Friday from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Live music will be provided throughout the weekend, beginning Friday with 90 Degrees West from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. The Oyster Festival’s royal court will be announced at 6 p.m. Friday.

On Saturday, Category 6 will perform from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. and Cowboy Mouth will take the stage from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m.

On Sunday, The Bucktown All Stars will play from 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., the Chalmette High Jazz Band will perform from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m., and No Idea will close out the weekend from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Other entertainment will include performances by local schoolchildren.

In addition to great food and music, the festival also will feature rides, games, raffles and crafts. Pay-one-price ride tickets are $20 in advance and can be purchased on the church grounds Friday prior to 6 p.m. Pay-one-price ride tickets bought at the fair will be $22 per session for the following times: Friday from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 11 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. A weekend ride pass also is available for $50.

Admission to the fair is free.

Pumpkin picking

First Baptist Church of Chalmette’s fifth annual Pumpkin Patch opened this week and will run through Oct. 31.

The patch, on the church grounds at 305 E. St. Bernard Highway, Chalmette, is open from 10 a.m. to dusk Monday through Saturday and from noon to dusk Sunday.

Pumpkins start at $1 and range in price depending on size. Donations support the ministries of First Baptist Church.

School groups are welcome. For information, call (504) 277-2939.

Chalmette Battlefield

The Battle of New Orleans University will present “What About the Women?” Saturday, Oct. 18, at the Chalmette Battlefield, 8606 W. St. Bernard Highway in Chalmette. Visitors will discover what life was like for New Orleans women in 1815 and how they contributed to the American victory at the Battle of New Orleans.

Women of the New Orleans Premiere Creole Society will discuss period fashions and demonstrate embroidery and knitting from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. There will be a spinning demonstration from 10 a.m. to noon, calas-making over an open fire from 11 a.m. to noon, followed by a talk at 1 p.m. on the role of camp followers.

Admission is free. For information, call (504) 281-0510 or visit

Cruise Night

The Antique Auto Club of St. Bernard’s monthly Cruise Night will be held Saturday, Oct. 18, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the parking lot of Brewster’s Restaurant, 8751 W. Judge Perez Drive in Chalmette.

Cruise Nights take place on the third Saturday of every month and are free and open to all years, makes and models.

For information, call (504) 279-5311 or (504) 874-0458.

BPW Man and Woman of the Year

The St. Bernard Business and Professional Women’s Club’s 54th Man and Woman of the Year annual banquet is Wednesday at 7 p.m. at the Frederick J. Sigur Civic Center, 8245 W. Judge Perez Drive in Chalmette. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. with a cash bar.

This year’s honorees are Barry Lemoine and Nora Egan.

Tickets are $55 and must be purchased in advance by calling Wanda Alcon at (504) 451-3694. Tickets will not be sold at the door.

Bingo games for charity

Bingo lovers can test their luck while helping two worthy causes during charitable gaming sessions being held at Lagniappe Video Bingo, 9069 W. Judge Perez Drive in Chalmette.

Sponsored by the St. Bernard Battered Women’s Program Inc. and The MotherShip Foundation, the bingo games are held Tuesdays through Saturdays from 6 to 11 p.m., and Wednesdays through Saturdays from noon to 5 p.m. Doors open one hour prior to game time.

The St. Bernard Battered Women’s Program provides support for women and their children who are victims of domestic violence by providing them with things such as shelter, food, clothing and transportation costs.

The MotherShip Foundation is a nonprofit (501c3) organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for Louisiana residents through the promotion of arts, culture and recreation. Funds generated from Charitable Gaming in Chalmette are earmarked for MotherShip Foundation’s Restore the Bayou Canopy campaign.

For information, call the bingo hall at (504) 277-0098 or Gail Gowland at the Battered Women’s Shelter at (504) 231-1247.

Kim Gritter writes about people, places and events in St. Bernard Parish. She can be reached at