Friday, June 25, 2010

A few more free and frugal events in New Orleans this weekend

In addition to the Oscar Meyer event and the Ogden Playdate, there are a few more things happening around town to keep you busy on the cheap this weekend.
Friday night, head to the northshore for the Columbia Street Block Party in Covington.  From 6:30 pm to 9:30 pm, you can enjoy this free event that includes a classic car show and live music.
Saturday morning, head to your nearest Lowe's Build & Grow clinic and help your kids make a wooden monster truck!
Saturday night, bring your lawn chairs, bug spray, and cooler to St. Patrick's Park for a free family movie night.  This weekend's movie begins 30 minutes after sunset and is one of my favorites, The Princess Bride.
Get out there and enjoy the weekend with your family!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Oscar Mayer Deli Fresh Sandwich Showdown

It's time to cheer for the home team: on Saturday, June 26th, from 10am until noon, the Crescent City Farmers Market will host the Oscar Mayer Deli Fresh Sandwich Showdown between Chef Chris Schlesinger of East Coast Grill in Boston and our very own Chef Brian Landry of Galatoire's (one of my very FAVORITE restaurants of all time!).  Stop by the market and watch Chef Landry as he prepares his New Orleans-style sandwich featuring Oscar Mayer Deli Fresh meats - and try it out yourself!  Enjoy!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Creative Way to Help the Gulf

Channel the artist within and create a masterpiece that will help the Louisiana Marine Mammal and Sea Turtle Rescue Program!  On Saturday, July 26th, from 10am until noon, the Ogden Museum of Southern Art will hold it's next Ogden Playdate: "Beach Blanket Bingo".  Admission to the playdate is an 8.5" x 11" piece of art created by YOU!  Come to the playdate dressed in your swimsuit or as your favorite Gulf creature, and be ready to dance, dance, dance!  Susan Cowsill will be on hand for entertainment, and milk and cookies will be served (and cocktails for the grown-ups!).

If you're able to attend, RSVP by calling Ava Sever at 504-523-4883

Friday, June 18, 2010

New Orleans Free and Frugal Events This Weekend

Like to bike? Then head up north to Abita Springs for the 10th Annual Louisiana Bicycle Festival. This loosely organized festival starts around 9am (or whenever people begin to show up) and ends about 4pm. The bicycle parade through town starts at 12:30pm for a half hour ride through Abita Springs.

If you have a little free time on your hands, your help is needed at City Park's Super Saturday Volunteer Day. Bring your sunscreen, gloves, garden tools, and bug spray, and lend a hand to help keep our City Park beautiful from 9am until noon.

Also on Saturday, head over to Fleurty Girl on Oak Street to meet children's book author Cornell Landry. He'll be at the shop from 2-4pm signing copies of his book Goodnight NOLA - one of our household favorites. Pick up a few awesome Fleurty Girl t-shirts while you're there!

Experience Lakeview at the West Harrison Avenue Block Party on Saturday from 12 noon until 6pm. There will be a spacewalk for the kids, an antique car display, and entertainment by Benny Grunch & the Bunch.

Thanks to Target, admission is free on Sunday at the Louisiana Children's Museum, and to honor dads on Father's Day, all dads get in free at the New Orleans Museum of Art.

Happy father's day to all dads out there!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Upcoming Review: CSN Stores

As many of you who know me in real life can attest, I do much of my gift and housewares shopping online. It's just so much more convenient than dragging the kids out and browsing things that do not at all interest them, like wall sconces and bedding. One online shopping website I was recently introduced to is CSN Stores. CSN Stores is a group of 200+ stores that sell everything from kids' toys, to cookware, to exercise equipment. Once you get on their site, be warned: you could spend HOURS browsing their wares!

The generous people at CSN Stores have offered to let me review one of their thousands of products, so that I can let you know about my online shopping experience. Stay tuned in the next few weeks to see what I've chosen!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Inexpensive Summer Movies

Looking for something inexpensive and air conditioned to do this summer with the kids? Many movie theater chains are offering deeply-discounted summer movie series to keep the kids entertained on the cheap. Here are a couple of local ones and their details:

AMC Theaters is offering their Summer MovieCamp every Tuesday at 10am. Tickets are $1 and proceeds go to two AMC charities: the Will Rogers Institute and Variety - the Children's Charity. This summer's lineup:
June 15th: Shrek the Third
June 22nd: Imagine That
June 29th: Monsters Vs. Aliens
July 6th: Madagascar
July 13th: Madagascar Escape 2 Africa
July 20th: Hotel for Dogs
July 27th: Kung Fu Panda
August 3rd: The Spiderwick Chronicles
August 10th: Surprise Mystery Title
AMC will also be offering discounted concession packages during these Summer MovieCamp showings.

In Kenner, Hollywood Cinemas 9 is offering their Summer Kids' Movie Camp every Monday through Friday at 10am. Tickets are $4 and include a child's drink and popcorn. Here's their summer lineup:
June 14-18 Stuart Little
June 21 -25 Curious George
June 28-July 2 Ice Age 3
July 6-9 Bee Movie
July 12-16 Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa
July 19-23 Shrek the Third
July 26- 30 Spongebob Squarepants
August 2-6 Hotel For Dogs

If you want to see the first run movies this summer, Hollywood Cinemas also offers $4 tickets all day Monday through Thursday - not a bad deal when you consider the typical movie ticket price these days!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

New Orleans Free and Frugal Events This Weekend

If you're looking for free and frugal fun this weekend, you're likely to find it in the French Quarter! This weekend, the Quarter is host to a trifecta of free festivals: the Creole Tomato Festival, the Louisiana Seafood Festival, and the Cajun-Zydeco Music Festival. All three festivals will offer incredible food, music, and fun for the whole family. Remember to bring (and wear!) your sunscreen, and drink plenty of water - I want to to be safe while having fun this weekend!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Wednesday Fun - If you can stand the heat!

Ok, judging by the temperature and heat index, summer really arrived a little early! If you can stand the sweltering conditions, here are a few events happening Wednesday to keep you entertained and on budget:

The last installment of the YLC Wednesdays at the Square is from 5pm to 7:30pm. Galactic and The Soul Rebels are closing out the season, rain or shine. This event is free, and proceeds from refreshments sold will benefit the Young Leadership Council.

If you're an Audubon Zoo member, Wednesday means Zoobilation! From 4:30pm to 7:30pm, members can enjoy the zoo after hours. Enjoy live music, animal feedings, animal open houses, free rides on the swamp train, and free simulator rides. There will be plenty of kids' activities, and author Cornell Landry will be on hand to sign his new book, "Happy Jazz Fest."

Since it's Wednesday, remember the New Orleans Museum of Art has free admission for all and is open late (until 8pm) on Wednesdays. And they have air conditioning!

Have a great Wednesday, and remember if you're going to be out in the heat - stay hydrated!

Friday, June 4, 2010

New Orleans Free and Frugal Events This Weekend

There are so many free and frugal events this weekend in the New Orleans area, it's enough to make your head spin!

Are you ready for some football? Practice, anyway. If so, head out to the Saints practice facility in Metairie where you can ogle the beautiful Lombardy trophy and watch our beloved Saints in an outdoor minicamp practice! The trophy will be on display at 1:30 pm Friday, and practice will start at 3pm (gates to the field open at 2:15pm). The trophy will again be on display 8:30am Saturday before practice at 10:15am (gates open at 9:15am).

Show your support for local oyster harvesters by attending the first ever New Orleans Oyster Festival this weekend in the French Quarter. This free festival runs Saturday (11am to 7pm) and Sunday (11am to 6pm) and in addition to great music features an oyster eating contest, largest oyster contest, and a kids' root beer float eating contest! Some of the best restaurants in the area will be on hand to sell you some delicious oyster dishes, so go hungry and eat up! Proceeds from the festival will go to "Save Our Coast".

Another way to help our coast is to head to Kenner to the Back to the Beach Festival, which also benefits Save Our Coast. Beginning Friday at 6pm, the festival runs through Sunday and features great music, food, and a car show and motorcycle rally. The cost is $10 for adults and $4 for kids, but members of the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation (which is $50 for a family for a year) get free admission - and admission to the Patron Party in a few weeks.

Want to learn how to dance like a cajun? On Saturday, head over to Maison on Frenchman for a Cajun/Country Fais Do-Do! Dance lessons begin at 3:30pm, and the bands start to play at 4pm. Admission is free, children are welcome, and food is available for purchase.

Bring your little artists over to the Alex Beard Studio on Saturday from 10am to 12 noon to draw and paint with artist and author Alex Beard. The event is free, but you need to RSVP by calling 504-539-9616. Sponsored by the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, refreshments will be served.

Also on Saturday, support the Success Preparatory Academy on Bienville Street at their Success Fest 2010! From 3pm to 7pm, enjoy food, music, a waterslide, and space walk. Admission is free, but the school will accept donations if you want to donate!

Do your kids enjoy the Amusement Park and Storyland at City Park? Friday night from 7-10pm is the kickoff party for the new summer hours at the park. Admission is free, but ride tickets/bracelets cost extra. Enjoy storytelling, games and prizes, face painting, and a DJ for your entertainment.

And don't forget Librarypalooza on Saturday at the East Bank Regional Library!

So, as you can see, there is simply NO reason to be sitting at home this weekend - make it a great one!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Mmmmmm.... doughnuts....

If you haven't yet heard and/or don't have it marked on your calendar, Friday June 4th, is National Doughnut Day! In celebration, Krispy Kreme is offering everyone who stops in a free doughnut of their choice (oh, how I wish they were legal on my nutrition plan!). And while you're at it, swing on by a participating Dunkin' Donuts and get another free donut with beverage purchase.

Someone please eat one for me!

Free Fishing Weekend!

Want to try fishing but don't have a fishing license? Well, on June 12th and 13th you have your chance! Thanks to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, anyone and everyone is allowed to fish recreationally without a fishing license next weekend. My family took advantage of this last year and ended up with 6 delicious blue crabs (most of them eaten by our older son). If you head out and catch a bounty (remember, size and limit restrictions still apply), you can always invite me over for dinner!

Make A Splash! READ!

"Make A Splash! READ!" is the theme for our local library system's summer reading program which kicked off on June 1st. For every 10 books a child reads (or has read to him), you get an entry into an end of summer drawing and your child gets to choose a prize. Both of my boys have signed up and are super excited about picking prizes (in fact, we've already been to the library twice in 3 days and they have 8 of the first 10 books completed!). Also, when you sign up you get a coupon for a free carousel ride at Lafreniere Park and some other goodies.

On Saturday, June 5th, from noon until 3pm at the East Bank Regional library, celebrate the kickoff to the summer reading program with "Librarypalooza". The library will have games, contests, t-shirt decorating, and storyteller Johnette Downing on hand to entertain the masses. Check out the library's calendar of events for more fun and free things to keep your kids busy this summer! And if you're not in the area, check with your local library system to see what they have planned for you!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Happening this Wednesday in New Orleans

Remember - Wednesdays are free admission for everyone to the New Orleans Museum of Art (thinks to the Helis Foundation's generosity), and hours are extended until 8pm as well. Check out the opening of the Swamp Tours: Exploring the Louisiana Contemporary Collection exhibit at 6pm. Included in the free admission is a drop-in community art-making studio for adults this Wednesday from 6-8pm. Art materials and instruction from art therapists are included!

It's also the second to last chance for you to enjoy a free concert at YLC's Wednesday at the Square. Performing this Wednesday is The Boogie Men and The N'awlins Johnnys.

Have a great Wednesday!