And so the Work on River District Begins…

River District is an awesome project that will bring a lot of positivity to the already up-and-coming area. This development will sit along the Mississippi Riverfront and include many features such as a music museum, soccer stadium, and concert venue.

The project has been in the work stages for around two and a half years due to lease negotiations with Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. “This whole process has taken a lot longer than anybody thought,” said CEO Chris Maguire of Cypress Equities, which is leading the project with local real estate developer Louis Lauricella. But, he added, “the city of New Orleans hasn’t seen a project like this in decades, and we want to get it right.”

New Orleans has not seen such a big project as this one. There is progress due to the lease agreement with Shell Oil as the anchor tenant for the complex. Top Golf will also be part of the development with construction on this starting soon.

Still, slow going is the Music and Heritage Experience museum which would be housed in a 120,000-square-foot-venue. The backed money was lost for the venture. “If we made a mistake in the last year, I’d say that it was that we didn’t talk to enough people,” he said. “We need to make the case that this is a music museum that will benefit the whole state and will pay for itself over and over.”

The soccer stadium is another stagnant project that has faced many obstacles. The project be built where a parking lot for the convention center now sits. The CEO of the convention center, Michael Sawaya does not like the idea of the soccer stadium. “I’m looking for something a little more exciting,” Sawaya said.

“What we really think makes sense there is entertainment-based retail and experiential concepts that are popping up all over the world,” Maguire said. “It’s concepts like the indoor putting, ax throwing, shuffleboard — all of those type of experiential entertainment.”

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Celebration in the Oaks Preview Party with Jingle Bells & Beer

This holiday season, two of New Orleans’ popular holiday events will combine into one. The Celebration in the Oaks Preview Party and Jingle Bells & Beer combined into one big festive event to start the holiday season off. This is an event that is fun for the twenty-one and over crowd and is an annual fundraiser. Patrons will enjoy entertainment, rides, and all-you-can-imbibe brew in both the Carousel Gardens Amusement Park and the Botanical Garden.

“Jingle Bells & Beer was already one of the most-anticipated events of the year, so why not add more to the mix,” said Celebration in the Oaks Director Julie LaCour. “Joining forces with the Preview Party is really going to kick the holidays off in style.”

You get both the fun of the amusement park with the elegant experience of the garden. Your general admission ticket will include unlimited beer, Amusement Park rides – including the iconic City Park Train – and snacks within the confines of Carousel Gardens. If you will go VIP you will enjoy a full bar and food from Acme Oyster House, Casa Borrega, Gris-Gris and Saint John, Katie’s Restaurant and Bar, Legacy Kitchen, Rosemary & Roux, Sala NOLA, Short Stop Poboys, and more.

Come be a part of this celebration as it goes to a very good cause.  City Park Conservancy’s annual operating budget is largely reliant on self-generated activities, often weather-dependent, and Celebration in the Oaks plays a key role in funding the Park’s continued maintenance and beauty each year. The public’s investment and attendance at Celebration in the Oaks supports City Park’s success going forward.

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Swamp Fête Celebrating South Louisiana Culture

Louisiana’s Audubon Zoo will host Swamp Fête this November. The event celebrates South Louisiana culture. There will be fun activities for all ages including Cajun and Zydeco music, dancing, a Cajun menu and native Louisiana animals.

The live music will be at both the Capital One Stage and in the Cajun Dance Hall. The lineup for the Capital One Stage includes Roots of Music, The Pine Leaf Boys, Sunpie and the Louisiana Sunspots, and Lost Bayou Ramblers. The Cajun Ballroom lineup includes Cajun Music Preservation Society, Sarah Jayde Williams, and T’Monde.

Patrons will learn about wetlands and wildlife conservation through presentations. The Swamp Exhibit will be the popular spot where you will see Sassafras the Louisiana black bear cub along with his friends two North American black bear cubs from Alaska.

Due to efforts of the wildlife experts the Lousiana black bear is now off the endangered list. This is good news for Louisiana’s official state mammal.

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A New Development for New Orleans Six Flags Property

Ever since the destruction of New Orleans Six Flags during Hurricane Katrina, the amusement park has sat rotting.  The 227-acre property
will be redeveloped by Bayou Phoenix.

Troy Henry the leader of Bayou Phoenix has big plans for the property which includes water parks, youth sporting facilities, two hotels, an 8.5-acre clear lake for swimming, a movie studio, an amphitheater, retail outlets and other amenities.

“Today is just the beginning. There is an incredible amount of work that needs to be done, but we are here for it,” said Jeff Schwartz, economic development director for the City of New Orleans.

The next year the plans will be drafted and the site cleared out.  After the old rides are demolished and junk removed, they can get a better lay of the land.  This means the plans might change during the project. With the help of Henry’s partner, Thomas Tubre, an owner of a local construction company, the project will be a success.

“They do all the technical stuff, all the crazy stuff most people cannot do,” Henry said. “So, once they get in there, we may have to move some of the components around. They’ll be the same components, but maybe not in the same place.”

“We look forward to bringing new commerce to New Orleans East. There’s significant untapped potential for family entertainment and travel sporting events,” said Henry.

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