CHAMBER MEETING: State Superintendent of Education John White and Jefferson Parish Superintendent Dr. Cade Brumley will address the annual meeting of the Jefferson Chamber of Commerce with a focus on how to strengthen the public school system. The meeting begins at 8 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 7, at the Crowne Plaza New Orleans Airport Hotel, 2829 Williams Blvd., Kenner. Tickets are $85-$125. For information, visit www.jeffersonchamber.org.
JERK CHICKEN FEST: The Marley Gras Jerk Chicken Festival will be held from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9, at Central City BBQ, 1201 S. Rampart St., New Orleans. It will include 15 food vendors with an emphasis on Caribbean-style dishes, crafts, live music and more. Tickets are $20, $5 for children, and may be purchased at www.marleygrasfestival.com.
LEGISLATIVE BREAKFAST: The National Coalition of 100 Black Women and The Links, Inc., will discuss economic development, infrastructure, and fiscal and other issues from 9:30 a.m. to noon Saturday, Feb. 9, at Southern University at New Orleans' Conference Center, 6400 Press Drive. For information, contact Yvonne Mitchell-Grubb at (504) 228-1947 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
RECYCLING PLAN: The Orleans Sierra Club will discuss ways to alleviate the tons of waste created by Carnival at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10, at the Dominion Auditorium of Audubon Zoo, 6500 Magazine St., New Orleans. Young Leadership Council representatives Rachel Skowyra and Joseph Colon of the group's YLC Recycles will discuss the new initiative Mardi Gras Recycling and its successes last year and plans for this year. The meeting is open to the public.
BARBECUE COMPETITION: The Cue in the View BBQ cook-off will be held at 10:30 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 10, at St. Dominic School, 6326 Memphis St., New Orleans. Sponsored by the Fathers' Club, the event features a cooking challenge, with the winning team earning a spot at Hogs for the Cause in March. For information, contact Annette Wherritt at email@example.com.
NORD FORMAL CLOTHING DRIVE: The New Orleans Recreation Department is accepting donations of gently used and dry-cleaned gowns, suits and shoes to support its annual Teen Mardi Gras Masquerade Ball. Donation drops are set up at City Hall in the Real Estate Office (5W06) and the NORD Administration Building (5420 Franklin Ave.) 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday. For information on donation drops, call (504) 658-3052 or email nordcTeens@nola.gov.
WRITERS' GROUP: A new fiction writers' group will hold meetings every other Tuesday beginning at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 12, at the East Bank Regional Library, 4747 W. Napoleon Ave., Metairie. Beginning April 16, the group will move to its permanent location at the River Ridge Library, 8825 Jefferson Highway. For information, contact Chris Smith at (504) 889-8143 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
MASQUERADE BALL FOR TEENS: The New Orleans Recreation Development Commission hosts a free, teens-only Carnival gala at 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 15, at Delgado Community College's Student Life Center, 916 Navarre Ave. Food, performances, a photo booth and more are planned for ages 12-17 in suits and gowns. For information, visit nordc.org.
MITZVA MAKERS PARADE: The B'nai B'rith Mardi Gras Mitzva Makers Hospital Parade will roll at 10 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 17, at Touro Infirmary, 3500 Prytania St., New Orleans. The parade, a mitzva or "good deed," brings Carnival fun to patients in long-term care and rehabilitation would not be able to attend a parade. The fun also spreads to Cura Health Hospital and Home Life in the Gardens nearby. For information or to participate, contact (504) 897-7011.
AARP CARNIVAL: The AARP will hold a Mardi Gras luncheon and dance at noon Sunday, Feb. 17, at Augie's, 6005 Jefferson Highway, Jefferson. Cost is $30 inclusive. Contact Betty Castillo for reservations at (504) 451-7386.
PLANETARIUM SHOW: "Solar Superstorms" will be a full-dome video presentation at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 20, at the Maumus Center, 721 Friscoville Ave., Arabi. The production takes viewers into the tangle of magnetic fields and plasma that vent the sun's rage in flares, solar tornadoes and coronal mass ejections. Tickets are $5-$10. Reserve tickets at (504) 301-0239
JAZZ FEST OUTREACH TICKETS: Applications are being accepted through March 8 for the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation's Community Outreach Tickets program for nonprofit social service organizations to distribute free tickets for those who cannot afford them. Tickets are distributed according to strict guidelines through organizations that provide direct, ongoing services to low-income residents of Louisiana. For more information, visit www.jazzandheritage.org.
JPAS' YOUTH INTENSIVES: Registration is open for sessions of Jefferson Performing Arts Society's Youth Summer Musical Intensives, with three options and offerings on both sides of the Mississippi River. One session is for students entering grades 3-8, one for grades 6-12 and a young actors' studio session for those entering grades 1-8. Production include "My Fair Lady" student edition, "Disney's Aladdin, Jr." and "The Little Mermaid Jr." For information and to register, visit www.jpas.org.
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.
TREASURE TOUR: For two nights, the Louisiana State Museum opens the Carnival Collection for behind-the-scenes viewing of costumes and artifacts, guided by Wayne Phillips, curator of Costumes and Textiles, and sponsored by the Friends of the Cabildo. Tours will be at 6 p.m. and 7:15 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 19, and Thursday, Feb. 21, at the storage facility, 1000 Chartres St., New Orleans. Cost is $25, $20 for members. Reservations are required at www.friendsofthecabildo.org or (504) 523-3939.
TOUR GUIDE CLASSES: Friends of the Cabildo are holding classes for French Quarter walking tour guides, a 100-hour course on New Orleans history, speaking and the mechanics of leading a tour. Classes are Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. March 11 to April 1 in the Arsenal building of the Cabildo, Jackson Square. Cost is $250, with a two-tour-per-month, two-year commitment. For information, visit www.friendsofthecabildo.org.
OFFICER HONORED: The Kiwanis Club of Algiers presented awards for New Orleans Police Department's Fourth District Officer of the Quarter to Carey Jordan and Officer of the Year to Derrick Banks recently. State Rep. Gary Carter also presented the two honorees with a proclamation from the Legislature.
NARFE MEETING: Active and retired federal/postal employees as well as members of neighboring chapters are invited to join the NARFE Vernon N. Landry St. Bernard Chapter 1398 for a monthly luncheon/meeting at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Feb. 13, at the Sicilian Room of Rocky and Carlos Restaurant, 613 St. Bernard Highway. St. Bernard Parish Sheriff's Office Capt. Charles Borchers will speak on “Refuse to be a Victim.” Guests are welcome.
KIWANIS SPEAKER: Brice Brown, head coach of the Edna Karr Cougars, three-time state football champions, will be the speaker at the Kiwanis Club of Algiers meeting at 7 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 14, at Woldenberg Village, 3701 Behrman Place, New Orleans. For information, call (504) 391-0667.
LOVE IN THE SUN: Dan Beck, an astrologist and founder of Inner Makeup Astrologer, will discuss “What Astrology Has to Say About Love,” at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 14, at the East Bank Regional Library, 4747 W. Napoleon Ave., Metairie. Beck said this lecture will give attendees new ideas for love whatever their romantic status. Attendees should know their sun sign. For information, contact Chris Smith, manager of adult programming for the library, (504) 889-8143 or email@example.com.
LOPINTO TO SPEAK: Jefferson Parish Sheriff Joseph Lopinto will be the guest speaker at 11:45 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 21, at Andrea's Restaurant, 3100 19th St., Metairie for the Republic Women's Club of Jefferson Parish. Tickets are $30-$35. For information or to make a reservation, call (504) 919-2101 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
DOMINCAN IN DIAMONDS: "Diamonds are Forever" is the theme for the Dominican High School's Legacy Gala and Patrons' Party at 7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 16, at the school at 7701 Walmsley Ave., New Orleans. Music, food, an auction and two raffles will be held. Tickets are $95. Visit www.stmarysdominican.org for information.
ART & SOUL: The NOCCA Institute's annual gala will be 6 p.m. Saturday, March 23, at the school at 5 Homer Plessy Way, New Orleans. On tap are entertainment, food and beverages plus a silent auction. Tickets are $50. For information, visit www.noccainstitute.com/artandsoul.