COMMUNITY EVENT

PUBLIC SPEAKING: JEDCO and the Jefferson Chamber will host a seminar at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, March 20, at the Conference Center, 701A Churchill Parkway, Avondale. Cost is $5. Topics include overcoming fears of public speaking, presentations, PowerPoint and "elevator" pitch. Register at www.jedco.org.

TOWN HALL MEETING: State Rep. Christopher Leopold, R-Belle Chasse, will host a meeting at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 20, at the Belle Chasse Middle School Gymnasium, 13476 La. 23, in Belle Chasse. Dr. Shawn Wilson, secretary of DOTD, and Chip Kline, chairman of Coast Protection and Restoration Authority, will attend. For more information, contact (504) 393-5649.

BEAN CONTEST: The Krewe of Red Beans will host "Road to the Final Fork," a cook-off to claim the "Legume D'Or" prize where more than 30 local restaurants vie for the title. Launching Wednesday, March 20, the public can sample and vote in pop-up tests, as well as sign up for $5 brackets, with proceeds going to local nonprofits. For information on where the pop-ups will be, see redbeansnola.com or call Devin DeWulf at (504) 520-9953.

GARDEN SEMINAR: "The Gardens of Downton Abbey" will be the theme of the Friends of Longue Vue annual Spring Garden Seminar on Wednesday, March 20, at 7 Bamboo Road, New Orleans. June Mays will present at two seatings: a brunch at 9:30 a.m. and high tea at 1 p.m. Tickets are $75. Reservations required, and character dress is encouraged. Tuesday is the deadline for tickets. Visit longuevue.com.

CHARITY FILM: Friends of the Cabildo will be screening the 2015 film "Big Charity: Death of America’s Oldest Hospital" at 5:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 20, at The New Orleans Jazz Museum at the Old U.S. Mint, 400 Esplanade Ave. The film series highlights films and documentaries that showcase New Orleans and Louisiana. Former employees of Charity Hospital will be on hand for the discussion following the showing led by Dr. Vivian Norris. Tickets are on sale at $10-$15 by calling (504) 523-3939 or visiting friendsofthecabildo.org.

LPO CONCERT: The Historic New Orleans Collection and the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra will present a free concert in St. Louis Cathedral at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 20. “Direct from New Orleans!” is part of Musical Louisiana: America’s Cultural Heritage, a series examining aspects of the state’s contributions to classical music. Seats are first-come, first-served, and live streaming will also be available on lpomusic.com and wlae.com.

SENIOR HELP: A free program on enrolling in Social Security and Medicare will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, March 20, at the East Bank Regional Library, 4747 W. Napoleon Ave., Metairie. Maria Alvarez, public affairs specialist with the Social Security Administration, and Molly Prokop, counselor with the Jefferson Council on Aging, will present. The event is geared for people who are turning 65 (working or retired), those under 65 who have been on Social Security disability for two years, and people on Medicare who need clarification of their choices or plan. For information, call (504) 889-8143 or email wcsmith@jefferson.lib.la.us.

FREE DIAPERS: Kenner's Department of Community Development will hold a diaper giveaway from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, March 22, at the Hispanic Resource Center, 4312 Florida Ave., for families struggling with diaper needs. Call (504) 469-2570. Also, there will be registration for free booster seats while supplies last for those meeting guidelines. Call Collying Salinas (504) 888-9622, ext. 201.

BIG PASTA: The Italian American St. Joseph Society will prepare the "world's largest pasta dish" in a free celebration at 11:45 a.m. Friday, March 22, at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside, 2 Poydras St., in the hotel's Grand Salon on the first floor. Wine and entertainment will also be on hand. 

PRAYER BREAKFAST: The Jefferson Prayer Breakfast will be at 7 a.m. Friday, March 22, at Copeland Tower, 2601 Severn Ave., Metairie. Tickets are $25. For information, visit www.liferesources.net.

HOUSE TOUR: Six homes in the university area of Uptown will be included on the Academy of the Sacred Heart Alumnae Association Home Tour, Sacré Coeur Tour de Maisons, at 10 a.m. Friday, March 22. Proceeds benefit the association, including funding of the Sr. Shirley Miller, RSCJ Scholarship at the academy. Tickets are $25-$30. Purchase online at www.ashrosary.org/hometour or at Parkview Hotel, 7004 St. Charles Ave., on the tour. 

BRASS BAND BATTLE: Friday, March 22, is the deadline to apply for the annual Class Got Brass competition for high schools and middle schools to be held Sunday, March 31. The contest hopes to create traditional New Orleans-style brass bands (as opposed to marching bands). At stake are more than $45,000 worth of instruments for the participating schools’ music programs. For more details including the application form and guidelines visit classgotbrass.com.

CHILDREN'S WORLD'S FAIR: A daylong cultural journey will be held Saturday, March 23, as the Louisiana Children’s Museum celebrates the 21st year of its Children’s World’s Fair -- and the last one at it's Julia Street location -- for ages 2-12. It looks at global customs through cultural performances and environments, games, music, literature, crafts, flavors and more of eight countries: Canada, China, Colombia, Denmark, France, Ireland, the Philippines, and Senegal. Admission ranges from $16-$100. Visit www.lcm.org.

GREENWAY FEST: "The Hike: Tunes, Tales and Trails Festival" will be 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, March 23, at the Lafitte Greenway Great Lawn, 500 N. Galvez St., New Orleans. The event includes food, drink and craft vendors, plus an array of musical entertainment and guided walking tours along the linear park. 

BRITISH MOTORING CLUB: All British cars and bikes are invited to the 29th annual British Car Day at 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, March 23, at Delgado Community College, Orleans Avenue between City Park and Navarre avenues. For more information or to register, visit www.bmcno.org.

ITALIAN PARADE: The Italian American St. Joseph Society parade rolls through the French Quarter at 6 p.m. Saturday, March 23. It begins at Canal and Chartres streets, runs through the Vieux Carre and ends at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside, 2 Poydras St. The queen and court, 15 floats, marching bands and over 500 kissing Italian American Marching Club parade marchers will process.

LEGAL CONSULTATIONS: The Hispanic Resource Center, the Pro Bono Project and Ferriol Perez LLC will hold consultations on civil legal matters at 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, March 23, at the center, 4312 Florida Ave., Kenner. Income proof will be required. For information, call (504) 469-2570. 

LOUISIANA IRISH-ITALIAN PARADE: The traditional Veterans Memorial Boulevard parade route in Metairie will be the locale for the annual parade that rolls at noon Sunday, March 24, from the Clearview Shopping Center, 4436 Veterans Blvd.  The parade will take the Severn Avenue loop and end at Veterans and Martin Behrman Avenue. 

MASTER DANCE CLASS: Phil Colgan, dance captain for the touring production of "Hamilton," will present two master classes for Rivertown Theaters at 9:30 a.m. Sundays, March 24 and 31, at  Encore Studio, 1999 Hickory Ave., No. 102, Harahan. The first class is for students ages 10 and over, the second is for ages 16 and over. Tickets are $50. Register by phone at (504) 737-5977 or online at www.rivertowntheaters.com.

DRIVER CLASS: A four-hour AARP Smart Driver class will be held at 5 p.m. Wednesday, March 27, at Ochsner/Elmwood Fitness Center, 1200 S. Clearview Parkway, Harahan. The class is open to anyone 50 and older, and those completing the course will receive a certificate that may qualify for discount from automobile insurer. The cost is $15 for AARP members, $20 for non-members. Call (504) 828-3962 between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. for additional information and to register.

"HOUSEWIVES" HEADLINER: Cynthia Bailey, entrepreneur and star of Bravo TV's "Real Housewives of Atlanta," will be the keynote speaker for the Urban League of Louisiana's 2019 Women-In-Business Challenge. The four finalists in the competition are Charon Flowers Maple of Designum Technologies, Sara Reardon of NOLA Pelvic Health, Leslie Barrow of Southern Comfort Real Estate Services and Courtney McWilliams of MaryMac's Doggy Retreat. The event is held during New Orleans Entrepreneur Week and will at 1 p.m. Wednesday, March 27, New Orleans Jazz Market, 1436 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd. Register at www.wib2019.eventbrite.com.

LAT 5 CLASSES: The Orleans Parish Assessor’s Office will hold a free Q&A session at 9:30 a.m. March 27 at City Hall to help business owners understand how to manually file LAT 5 Business Personal Property Self-Reporting forms and learn how to complete the form electronically at www.nolaassessor.com. Reservations recommended at (504) 897-6110 or email bcodevin@aol.com.

MONEY MATTERS: Nunez Community College, in partnership with Regions Bank, will host a series of free financial strategy workshops on various days from 11:30 a.m. to noon in the AST Building Veterans' Conference Room, 3710 Paris Road, Chalmette. Upcoming sessions include:

  • "Banking Basics for Students," Monday, March 25
  • "10 Ways to Simplify Your Life Using Banking Technology," Wednesday, March 27
  • "Energize Yourself Financially," Monday, April 1
  • "Protecting Your Small Business from Fraud," Wednesday, April 3
  • "Wise Use of Credit," Monday, April 8.

For more information, call (504) 278-6439.

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HERB SALE: The Herb Society of America, New Orleans Unit, will hold its spring plant sale at 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, March 30, at 8301 Olive St., New Orleans. Members will be on hand to help gardeners select plants for culinary and ornamental use. The sale will benefit projects of the New Orleans Botanical Gardens, Longue Vue Gardens, the Herb Society of America, New Orleans Unit’s educational programs and other local gardening initiatives. For information contact Linda Franzo at lindafranzo57@gmail.com or (985) 781-4372, or email herbsno@gmail.com.

EJHS REUNION PLANNED: The East Jefferson High School graduates of 1958, and also graduates of 1956-57, will gather for their 61st reunion at 1 p.m. Saturday, March 30, at The Ridgeway, 2431 Metairie Road. Cost is $35 per person or $60 per couple, including buffet and beverages. Checks to EJHS Class of ’58 Reunion should be mailed to John Batson, head of the committee, 330 Betz Ave., Jefferson, LA 70121.

GARDEN PLANTING: Volunteers are needed from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday, March 30 at the Centennial Park Butterfly Garden to install plants at 101 Willow Drive, Gretna. Bring garden tools and, if possible, a butterfly plant such as daisies, pentas or salvia. All plants accepted. This event is part of a project to develop the park into an educational site about Louisiana pollinators. Light refreshments will be provided. Sponsored jointly with the Twilight Gardeners Association and the Master Gardeners of Greater New Orleans.

CHORAL CONCERT: The Jefferson Chorale, an affiliate of the Jefferson Performing Arts Society, and the Benjamin Franklin High School Choir will present "Pastorale," at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 31, St. Joseph Church, 610 Sixth St., Gretna. Dr. Louise LaBruyere directs.

EGG HUNT: Longue Vue House and Gardens will hold two Easter Egg Hunts on Saturday, April 6 at 6 Bamboo Road, New Orleans. The morning hunt is 9:30 a.m. and the afternoon is 1:30 p.m. Tickets are $12-$15. Bring a basket. Preregistration is required with an e-receipt. Rain date is Saturday, April 13. For information, visit www.longuevue.org.

SCOUT RUN DAY: The annual Thin Mint Sprint and the 1-mile Daisy Dash will be held at 9:10 a.m. Saturday, April 6 at the St. Tammany Trace Trailhead, Koop Drive, Mandeville, open to all ages and the public. or more information, visit www.gsle.org/thinmintspringt.

TAX PREPARATION: Free tax preparation and financial advising will be available at Southern University at New Orleans through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance/Tax Counseling for the Elderly program from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays until April 18. Go to Room 114 of the SUNO Conference Center, 6400 Press Drive, New Orleans. For information or to schedule an appointment, call (504) 286-5305 or (504) 286-5303.

SCHOLARSHIP OPEN: The Republic Women's Club of Jefferson Parish is conducting an essay scholarship contest for Jefferson Parish college-bound seniors with a deadline of April 19 for an 800-1,000-word paper on immigration. "To Build or Not to Build" will address how immigration policies have changed in the United States in the last century and the biggest factors leading to these changes. Essays should be double spaced and submitted to the chairperson electronically in a Word document.  title page must accompany each entry and contain the name of the student, home address, email address, telephone number and the name of the school which he/she attends. Email to Dr. Judith G. Miranti at jgmiranti2@cox.net.

TAX HELP: University of Holy Cross tax accounting students will provide free tax preparation assistance for low-to-moderate income New Orleans-area residents at its campus, 4123 Woodland Drive in Room 1034.  The assistance program runs through tax season from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays until April 13. For information, call (504) 398-2230 or visit uhcno.edu.

REUNION PLANNED: The alumnae of St. Joseph's Academy will hold a 50-year reunion at 11 a.m. Saturday, June 8, at Ralph's on the Park, 900 City Park Ave., New Orleans. Cost is $40. For information, contact Dianne Volpe at diannev6@att.net.

Meetings

JAM SESSION: The New Orleans Jazz Club will have its monthly jam session from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, March 31. Immediately following will be the general membership meeting for election of board and officers for the 2019-21 term at Mo’s Chalet, 3201 Houma Blvd., Metairie. For information, call (504) 780-2961. 

Benefits

FESTIVAL FETE: Nicholas Payton will be the headliner at a fundraiser for the French Quarter Festival at 8 p.m. Friday, March 22, at the Fillmore New Orleans, Harrah's Casino, 6 Canal St. Other entertainment includes the Nayo Jones Experience, drumming by Mardi Gras Indians, A Tribe Called Gumbolia, dinner, drinks and a silent auction. Tickets start at $150. For tickets, see www.fqfi.org.

ART & SOUL: The NOCCA Institute's annual gala will be at 6 p.m. Saturday, March 23, at the school, 5 Homer Plessy Way, New Orleans. On tap are entertainment, food and beverages plus a silent auction. Tickets are $50. For information, visit noccainstitute.com/artandsoul.

CRAWFISH FOR COPS: Citizens Organization for Police Support in the NOPD 4th District will hold a crawfish boil fundraiser at 4 p.m. Saturday, March 23, at the Federal City Green Park on Gen. Meyer Avenue. Tickets are $25. For information, call (504) 444-2423 or email whiteela@aol.com.

GUMBO BOWL: Trinity Community Center will be the beneficiary of the Gumbo Cook-Off For a Cause: Supporting the Children of Hollygrove from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, March 24, at Rock 'N' Bowl, 3016 S. Carrollton Ave., New Orleans. The event includes a cooking contest, live and silent auctions, bowling and music by Bruce Daigrepont. Tickets are $20-$40. www.tcc.tickeleap.com/gumbo-cookoff-2/

THOMAS ROAST: Delgado Community College Foundation will host the 2019 Roast of the Town fundraiser at 7 p.m. Friday, March 29, at Harrah’s New Orleans Theater, 8 Canal St. The event will roast Warner Thomas, president and CEO, Ochsner Health System. A reception and silent auction begins at 7 p.m., followed by dinner, the roast and a live auction. Tickets $250. Visit www.dcc.edu.

HOWLING SUCCESS: Celebrate Peace, Love & Good Juju at the Howling Success patron party and gala at 7 p.m. Saturday, April 6, at The New Orleans Advocate, 840 St. Charles Ave., to support the Louisiana SPCA. With food, music and Bryan Batt and Tom Cianfichi, there's also live and silent auctions. Tickets are $125-$250. For information or tickets, visit www.la-spca.org/howlingsuccess.