The weekend is packed with fun and festive activities ranging from robotics to dragon dancers, commemorations and Mother’s Day concerts, with a pinch of ecology, copper, glass and a good dose of soul. Hey, it’s weekend in New Orleans. Enjoying.
The French Market offers the flavors and culture of Asian and Pacific countries on Saturday for the ASIAN PACIFIC AMERICAN HERITAGE FESTIVAL. The one-day celebration includes a host of culinary vendors selling flavor treats such as mandoo one, bakso sapi, bagoong brussels sprouts, kipadobo, spring rolls, and Vietnamese poboys. Performances include dance and performances by groups representing India, China, the Philippines, Vietnam and Taiwan. The festival, on N. Peters Street on the Mississippi River, will take place from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Taste what awaits here.
Three days of robust, red festival fun will be on the TOMATO FESTIVAL at the Church and School of Our Lady of Prompt Succor in St. Bernard. The festival, a textbook example of a Southern Louisiana party, includes food, entertainment, parades, games, amusement rides and dancing in the streets (well, on the property). The festival entrance fee is $5, with a variety of ride ticket packages including a pay-on-price option to enjoy the thrills all weekend. The fun starts on Friday at 5:30 PM and Saturday and Sunday at 11:00 AM at 2320 Paris Road, Chalmette. Taste what you can expect at the festival here.
Female role models take center stage at the Audubon Tea Room on Friday for the WOMEN OF FABRIC LUNCHEON by Bridge House / Grace House. Three honorees will be celebrated, plus auctions, raffles, entertainment and more. The position also serves as a fundraiser for the substance abuse treatment programs. Tickets are $125 for the afternoon fun that begins at 11 a.m. at 6500 Magazine St., New Orleans. View the information and the work of the organization here.
Obviously one of the city’s fun free events is the YAYA BRASS N GLASS Friday at 6:00 PM at the YAYA Arts Center, 3322 LaSalle St., New Orleans, where alumni and current attendees will lead art demonstrations on glass blowing, digital art, painting, embroidery and pottery. Plus, there’s music, food, drinks and a chance to partake in the Goblet Grab (buy a handmade glass and fill it up at the bar all night!).
The engineering of robotics can be seen Saturday from 10 a.m. when the National World War II Museum presents their 2022 ROBOTICS CHALLENGE CHAMPIONSHIP† Student teams have submitted two robot game videos and have been selected to compete for the honor based on the Battle of the Atlantic from the war, with different steps to be performed by the robot. The projects will be presented to the jury members who will judge the projects and question the participants. There are many more details about the championships here.
The Westwego Fisheries & Farmers Market is teeming with chefs at 11 a.m. Saturday for the annual CRAWFISH COOK OFF where 21 teams compete to brag for their culinary creations of shellfish. There will also be entertainment, craft vendors and food trucks for those wanting something other than crawfish (forget the thought!). Tickets start at $15 for the event at 484 Sala Ave. Crawl over here for the cook-off info.
Environmental activities with a French flair will de good time of the day Saturday at 2 p.m. for the ECO SCHOLARSHIP(E) at Alliance Française of New Orleans, 1519. The nonprofit school and cultural center, along with the Consulate General of France in Louisiana, have assembled a medley of environmental organizations and activities (and food and music) to raise awareness about the adopting more environmentally conscious practices. The free event will feature panels on making Mardi Gras more sustainable, education, and New Orleans’ future as a greener city. The greening of the city starts here.
Home to amazing talent, the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts will be the beneficiary of the ART & SOUL gala Saturday at 7:00 PM at 600 Homer Plessy way, New Orleans. The evening affair features music, food, art and more, provided by NOCCA alumni, including Orlando Gilbert and the Crescent City Connection and Doreen’s Jazz New Orleans. A dizzying array of art will be up for auction, plus the chance to win a new Lincoln Corsair. Tickets start at $50 for alumni, $100 general admission. Check out the beat of Art&Soul here.
The patriarch of the wonderfully musical Marsalis family died amid the COVID pandemic and will now be honored in true New Orleans fashion as the family ELLIS MARSALIS JR. MEMORIAL AND SECOND LINE to the public Sunday at 1 p.m. After an invitational memorial at Gallier Hall, the second line exits 545 St. Charles Ave. and goes to Congo Square in Louis Armstrong Park on N. Rampart. Then, at 4:00 PM, the meeting heads to the Ellis Marsalis Center for Music at 1901 Bartholomew St. Learn more about the memorial here.
It’s a week after the official day, but with a full calendar, the Vieux Carre Poperty Owners, Residents and Associates decided to move their annual Musical Greeting to Mothers to Sunday at 4 p.m. for the MOTHER’S DAY CONCERT AND PICNIC at Cabrini Park, 1219 Dauphine St., New Orleans. The after-event features the stylish sounds of the New Leviathan Oriental Fox-Trot Orchestra, fun for children and face painting. So grab Mom, a chair or blanket, a picnic basket and head to the French Quarter park (but please leave the pets at home). Get all the information about the pleasure of tapping on foot here.