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New Orleans City Park Awarded Accolades:  Labor Day Weekend Discounts for the Public

New Orleans City Park was awarded two awards this week. City Park is excited to announce these accolades and pass on the joy to the public with discounts at three attractions for the Labor Day weekend.

City Park’s City Putt miniature golf course was voted Best Golf Course in New Orleans by the readers of Gambit Weekly. We thank the public for your votes and look forward to seeing even more smiling faces on the mini links. City Putt is open Tuesday through Sunday and especially late on weekends closing at midnight. Gambit readers also voted City Park the Best Place to Have a First Date. We see many date nights at City Putt for New Orleanians in the future. See this link for details.

City Park was named, by Goodful on BuzzFeed, one of 16 parks worldwide that are, “worth taking a detour” to see. We are in great company with parks from all over the world including parks in Hong Kong and Shanghai. We are thrilled Buzzfeed is helping us in our push to make New Orleans City Park a world class park. See this link for details.

Hot off the heels of these awards the public will be able to take advantage of discounts at these three City Park attractions to help us celebrate: City Putt, Carousel Gardens Amusement Park, and Storyland.

WHEN:     

Friday, August 31st through Monday, September, 3rd

11 am to 5 pm

DETAILS:

-$4 off a round of mini golf
-Free admission to Carousel Gardens Amusement Park (a $4 savings)
-Free admission to Storyland (a $4 savings)

WHERE:
  City Putt: 33 Dreyfous Drive
  Carousel Gardens Amusement Park: 7 Victory Avenue
  Storyland: 5 Victory Avenue

Parking is available on Park streets and the two parking lots adjacent to the attractions. For more information about New Orleans City Park and these attractions, please visit NewOrleansCityPark.com. The Oscar J. Tolmas Visitor Center, at 5 Victory Avenue, is open seven days a week from 10 am to 5 pm with staff ready to answer questions. A Park map is also available at the Visitor Center.


WHAT THEY ARE SAYING: "Buzzfeed has identified 16 parks worldwide that are worth making a special trip to see.  We are thrilled to be considered among only 16 parks throughout the world that merit a special trip," said Bob Becker, New Orleans City Park CEO.

Oh, to be a fish in City Park!

Oh, to be a fish in New Orleans City Park! Thanks to our friends at Atmos Energy, who supplied scrap pieces of natural gas pipes, and our wonderful partners at Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, who designed the underwater fishing sculptures, City Park’s fish will be more cultured and more plentiful than ever this spring. 

With the help of volunteers from Marriott and Ritz-Carlton, twenty three “spider block” sculptures were built and deployed in City Park’s lagoons in late-April. These sculptures will act as fishing reefs (similar to the Christmas tree reefs installed last winter), providing needed refuge for small fish, structure for algae and insect growth, and an attractive feeding spot for larger angler fish – a boost to the entire fish population in City Park’s lagoons!

The sculptures are exclusively for our fishy friends and are not visible above water, but if you are looking for a good fishing spot this summer, check out the following areas and let us know what you catch (jgundlach@nocp.org).
• Marconi Fishing Pier
• Bayou Metairie near NOMA
• Lagoon near Grow Dat Youth Farm
• Little Lake on the Palm Drive side

 

Written by:

Jo Gundlach, Sustainability Coordinator

jGundlach@nocp.org

What happens to the Tennis Balls? Funny you should ask!

Reblogged from this page.

City Park / Pepsi Tennis Center is one of our largest partners, and another great example of a public facility focused on offering premiere tennis courts while staying committed to sustainability! Johanna Gundlach, the Sustainabilty Coordinator for City Park tells us that the public reaction to seeing Recycleballs bins on their courts is one of enthusiasm and curiosity. “People actually get excited about recycling their tennis balls, rather than throwing them in the trash can. They want to know more about what they will be used for, and even stop by and drop off bags of used balls!”

Many consider Pepsi Tennis Center to be the Premiere Tennis Facility in New Orleans. It’s the biggest facility in Louisiana with 26 courts (16 hard / 10 clay), and home to hundreds of tennis players - from collegiate athletes (Loyola and Tulane both play there), to USTA players, to recreational players of all ages.  But size isn’t the only thing that sets City Park apart, players are drawn to City Park’s commitment to protecting the environment.

Johanna tells us, “New Orleans City Park is continuously working towards becoming a leader in sustainability in the New Orleans region by greening Park operations at every level and in every department. Example green efforts in New Orleans City Park include increasing access to recycling in all public use areas of the Park, identifying opportunities for energy savings through lighting and HVAC upgrades, sustainability education programs for City Park employees, and community-wide citizen science programs to inventory and better understand the Park's flora and fauna.”

Last year, Johanna and her colleagues went on a mission to find a way to recycle and reuse tennis balls and prevent them from ending up in a landfill, and when she learned about Recycleballs, she jumped on the opportunity to partner with another organization dedicated to making tennis a greener sport. Thanks, Johanna and City Park for your partnership and your outstanding green efforts!

 

[Pictured:  Martin Alexander, Tennis Maintenance Attendant for the City Park / Pepsi Tennis Center. Martin plays a huge roll in the success of the tennis ball recycling program, and educates and encourages visitors to recycle their used tennis balls.]

 

To find ot more information on tennis at New Orleans City Park, please click here

Record Broken! A BIG Bass!

Broc Corcoran caught a record bass, 9.3lbs

The location’s a secret! Record breaking!

Broc Corcoran caught a record bass, 9 lbs 3oz, in New Orleans City Park on Monday, March 5, 2018.

He was using a soft plastic minnow on a bait caster. Where did he make the catch in City Park? Well, that’s a secret! Congrats Broc!

Don’t forget the 71st annual Big Bass Fishing Rodeo is Saturday, March 24th.

Louisiana is a sportsman’s paradise and City Park is no exception. Bass, catfish, perch and other fish can be found in the park’s 11+ miles of lagoons. Every spring, City Park hosts the Big Bass Fishing Rodeo and Fishtival, a one-day event featuring music, exhibits, a silent auction, a casting contest and demonstration, and of course, plenty of fishing.

To fish in City Park, you need a valid freshwater fishing license from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. No fishing is allowed on golf courses or in areas with active contruction. No person may place their own boat in the park waterways. The park encourages anglers to catch and release fish.

There are many great fishing spots in the Park. Most people who fish won't share their great secret places to fish! But we've seen many people fishing behind the Casino Building, up and down Bayou Metairie, in Big Lake, off the Fishing Pier on Marconi Avenue, and in the water ways in Couturie Forest. If conditions are right and you're patient, you could catch a fish and have a great fish tale to tell.

*Fishing is not allowed from boats (only from the shoreline).

The previous record breaking catch:

Occurred: August 15, 2013

Tim Zissis loves to fish in City Park because it brings back memories of his childhood – fishing with his father and younger brother starting more than 35 years ago.  Zissis’s father passed when he was only 16.  The now 44 year-old spends time at the park because he says it’s quality time with his dad.  While Zissis enjoys making friends with other fishermen enjoying the park’s waterways, the New Orleanian has also used fishing as a way to rehab, exercise and gain strength after a life-threatening infection almost caused his leg to be amputated last year.

On August 14th, around 3:30 p.m., Zissis, an avid City Park angler, cast his homemade plastic frog along the bank when a monster bass hit it.  Zissis fought the bass for about five minutes but the large fish spit the bait loose.  Zissis knew this was his dream bass – one of the biggest he ever sparred with.  When the fish got away, he literally fell to his knees, convinced his trophy was gone.  He regained his composure and made another cast.  All of a sudden, Zissis felt his line jerk.  A bass smashed his bait, again, four inches off the bank.  This time, success!  He knew it was the record when the fish jumped three feet out of the water.  He was amazed to see the size of the bass!  Zissis rushed over to City Park administration to show it off with hopes he broke the 9 pound City Park record.  He did – by .05 pounds.

After 35 years, Zissis has accomplished one of his life’s goals – catching a record-breaking bass in honor of his father.


Think you've broken the current record?

Fishing in the Park and think you've broken the current record? Here are the details you need to know:

-Must be a live fish

-Must be caught at New Orleans City Park

-Photographs are needed

-A photograph is needed of the weight displayed on a state-calibrated scale (fish markets near the Park have these, but make sure the photo shows the weight in decimal amount and includes the state ID tag that is located on all state inspected scales).

-Witness statements to the catch are preferred

Bring the photos and catch over to the Park Administration building if during normal business hours. Email story, witness statements, and photos to JLacour@nocp.org.

Above all, remember there is honor among fish and men. Please be honorable and follow all directions.

Christmas Tree Fishing Reefs in City Park

There will be stiff competition in this year’s Big Bass Fishing Rodeo – Brother Martin and Rummel students have already staked out their fishing spots and hope to be reeling in the biggest fish in the lagoons!
On February 15, 2018, New Orleans City Park, in partnership with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF), welcomed fishing clubs to the Park, from Brother Martin High School and Archbishop Rummel High School, to build fishing reefs using Celebration in the Oaks Christmas trees.
The fishing reefs will provide critical fish habitats and a boost to the aquatic food chain. Shortly after the Christmas tree reefs are installed, they will sink and create structure within the water. In water bodies lacking structure, baitfish tend to be scattered. As new hiding places, the Christmas tree reefs will attract smaller baitfish and the desired sportfish will soon follow.
As the trees decompose, the released nutrients spur a bloom in new aquatic vegetation, phytoplankton, and algae. This vegetation is the base of the aquatic food chain. Zooplankton forage on the new vegetation, and attract aquatic insects, snails, and crawfish. The abundance of life continues to multiply, as these species attract smaller fish that then bring the larger fish.
We don’t want to give away any secret fishing hot spots, but if you see a fisherman/woman sporting a Brother Martin or Rummel t-shirt, you might want to follow them to the lagoon!
We love our volunteers and the Park wouldn’t be what it is today without their help.
If you or your group would like to volunteer at New Orleans City Park, please email Tyler Havens, Volunteer Manager, at thavens@nocp.org.  
For more information about the upcoming 71st annual Big Bass Fishing Rodeo on Saturday, March 24th, please visit BigBassFishingRodeo.com.

- Johanna Gundlach, Sustainability Coordinator

jgundlach@nocp.org

City Park Presented the Achievement Award in Employee Wellness

On January 26th, 2018, New Orleans City Park won the Achievement Award in Employee Wellness at LifeCity’s annual “Love Your City Awards Ceremony”.
The event is held each year to recognize the efforts and impact of sustainable business leaders in the New Orleans area. City Park has been a premium member with LifeCity for three years and is excited about the progress made toward becoming a more sustainable organization and member of the New Orleans community.  The Achievement Award in Employee Wellness recognized City Park’s improvements in employee engagement through all-staff events, increased opportunities for training and education, and a health and wellness fair.
Some of the proudest achievements in this area include the many events that bring our employees together, including a bowling party, crawfish boil, health and wellness fair, holiday luncheon, and a breakfast. These organization-wide events are a great opportunity for individuals from different departments to share updates and progress, hear new ideas and suggestions for improvements, play games, have fun, and get to know one another. A huge thanks to City Park’s human resources team for their hard work organizing the events. 
We are also proud of our new monthly lunch and learn program, called Food for Thought Lunches, hosted by City Park’s Green Team. The goal of the program is to provide sustainability education to Park employees and to foster a culture of environmental stewardship within City Park. Each lunch features organizations or individuals in the community that are contributing to a greener New Orleans. So far, we have learned from Compost N.O.W., Bike Easy, Energy Smart and Energy Wise, New Orleans Botanical Garden, and The Green Project. 
City Park is very grateful for all of the support and guidance provided by the LifeCity team. They have played a huge role in helping us achieve our sustainability goals. For more information about what we have accomplished this year, check out our 2017 Sustainability Highlights below this paragraph.

An Especially Green Holiday Celebration

Were you at the Celebration in the Oaks Preview Party? If so, you probably enjoyed savory sides, delectable desserts, and a few holiday spirits! With over 1,500 attendees, that equals a lot of trash!

But not to worry, if the spirits didn’t get in the way of your keen observation skills, you may have noticed one of the large signs that read “ZERO WASTE CITY PARK,” cluing you in to our exciting efforts to make this a sustainable celebration by minimizing event waste sent to the landfill.

And we think it was a smashing success!

With all numbers in, we are proud to announce that, in our first year of going Zero Waste at the Celebration in the Oaks Preview Party, we achieved a diversion rate of 81%. That means that we kept 3138 pounds of the event waste out of a landfill and, instead, gave it a new life!

I know what you’re thinking: But what about all of the plates, forks, cups, napkins, and food that I threw into the garbage cans?

Surprise! Almost all of the trash cans around the event were lined with biodegradable bags. Food was served on biodegradable plates and bowls made from sugarcane bagasse, alongside biodegradable forks and spoons made from fermented corn starch. And although your beverage cups looked plastic, they, too, are made from renewable plant starches.

So at the end of the beautiful evening, 1632 pounds of event waste was sent to The Composting Network to be turned into soil and reused in gardens and landscapes across the City – maybe even making its way back to our garden beds in the New Orleans Botanical Garden. A pretty cool, sustainable cycle, if you ask us.

And while the food and beverage represented a significant portion of the event’s waste, we also had to consider other waste streams, including materials exiting the bars – plastic bottles, aluminum cans, and lots of glass – to ensure the greatest waste diversion rate. By working closely with our bartenders, we were able to collect 324 pounds of mixed plastic and aluminum and 1,182 pounds of glass for recycling!

There were, of course, a few odd items that ended up in the trash, but overall we are very pleased with the results. So thank you to everyone who attended this year’s Celebration in the Oaks Preview Party and contributed to a very sustainable holiday celebration. We look forward to seeing you next year, as we attempt to keep even more waste out of the landfill!

Happy 70th Birthday Bingle Party in City Putt

It's Mister Bingle's 70th birthday this year! Visit City Putt for a holiday themed party on December 1st, 2nd, or 3rd from 3pm to 7pm. The party is $10/person and tickets can be purchased the day-of from City Putt located between Victory and Dreyfous. Each person will get to play one course, enjoy 1 cocktail (or soft drink), taste sweet treats, get a free raffle ticket, and receive giveaways, too. Bring a date or bring the family – everyone will have a great time! For more information call 483-9385.

*And don’t forget just across the street, Celebration in the Oaks will be open, too!
*City Putt is open regular hours with regular fees outside the time of the party.

Celebration in the Oaks

The 2017 season is Celebration in the Oaks' 31st anniversary!

Celebration in the Oaks in City Park is one of the most spectacular holiday lights festivals in the country, with more than 165,000 visitors pouring into the Park to see the magical winter spectacle. City Park’s famous oaks are swathed in hundreds of thousands of twinkling lights and breathtaking light displays are scattered throughout 25 acres of the Park, including the Botanical Garden, Storyland, and Carousel Gardens Amusement Park.

Click the logo for more information!

Hours
2017 dates:
November 24, 2017 through January 1, 2018
Closed November 27, 28, 29, 30
Closed Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve

Monday - Thursday : 6pm -10pm
Friday: 6pm -11pm
Saturday: 5pm - 11pm
Sunday: 5pm - 10pm
Last entry to event is 30 minutes prior to closing.

Your tickets are good for any night of the event that we are open in the current season. There is no refund due to rain, power outages, and other unforeseen conditions.

Train tickets sales on-site will stop one hour before closing. At one hour before closing, you will not be able to get in the train line (only before that time). This also may happen with other amusement rides. Individual train tickets may be used in place of any single ride tickets for any other ride in Carousel Gardens.

-Admission Tickets: $9/person
-Children under 3 and Friends of City Park members: Free
Rides:
-Train Ride: $5/person
-Amusement Park Rides: $4/single ride ticket (excludes train)
-$18/unlimited ride band (includes train, must be purchased at the event)
Your tickets are good for any night of the event that we are open in the current season. There is no refund rain, power outages, and other unforeseen conditions.

Brews and Boos

Join your friends for Brews and Boos! TWO NIGHTS of parties!

Unlimited rides, Jello shots, Scare-ousel, Costume Contest, Open Beer Bar, Snacks, TRICKS and TREATS!

Friday, October 27, 2017 - 11pm to 2am

Saturday, October 28, 2017 - 11pm to 2am

General admission: $30/person

VIP admission: $50/person

To be clear, buy one ticket for one night of the party. If you're going with a group, be sure to purchase tickets for the same night. Only tickets for the night purchased will be allowed in the party on that night.

General admission includes unlimited rides, and open beer bar, snacks, and giveaways!

Only so many VIP tickets will be sold- so don't wait to buy them! VIP treatment includes everything from general admission PLUS a separate spirits open bar. And you'll get seating and candy. PLUS access to a palm reader....and she's legit y'all!

If you have trouble purchasing tickets, please call David at (504) 483-9419.

 

Carousel Gardens Amusement Park will be decked out in Halloween decorations - so be prepared to take lots of photos! We'll have the carousel turned into the Scare-ousel!

Ride the Ladybug Roller Coaster.  Wacky Shack, Miniature Train, Tilt-a-Whirl, Musik Express, Bumper Cars, Slime Buckets, Coney Tower, Scrambler, and the Ferris Wheel - you can see the Superdome from the top! AND the NEW Fun Slide!

The party:

Beers: Holy Roller, Shock Top, Budweiser, Michelob Ultra, and Modelo

Treats: Orange Jello Shots, nacho station, snacks, and Koz's jambalaya

Place: Carousel Gardens Amusement Park

Costume contest: Come in your best costume to participate! Judging will be at 1am and trophies will be awarded to Best Male Costume, Best Female Costume, Best Group Costume (3 or more people), and Best Couple. Congrats to last year's winners - "The Golden Girls".

Tickets will be scanned a the gate.  We will only sell a certain amount of tickets. Be sure to buy the ticket for the right fright night.

Click here to buy your tickets ahead of time as we expect this event to sell out leaving no tickets to be sold at the gates.

Rules: You must be 21 years old or older to attend this event. No exceptions will be made.

Parking: Do try to carpool or use a rideshare. If you drive, please park in the 2 lots between Anseman & Marconi and Victory & Dreyfous.

Rain dates: the rainsdate for the 10/27 part y is 10/28 from 11pm to 2am. The rain date for the 10/28 party is 10/29 from 9pm to midnight.

We're partnering with Uber to offer a discounted ride for new users. Enter the promo code BREWSBOOS17 for 1 ride up to $20 off for new users only. It is valid until Nov. 30, 2017. To sign up for Uber, go to uber.com/go/brewsboos17

There is no refund due to rain, power outages, and other unforeseen conditions for this fundraiser. Should the event need to be canceled for any reason, please visit NewOrleansCityPark.com for information. Please keep in mind our events are fundraisers. When possible the event will be rescheduled. Should that not be possible, no refunds will be given, and we invite ticket holders to consider their ticket as a donation to the Park.

The ribbon has been cut! The Multi Use Path is OPEN!

New Orleans City Park is proud to announce the opening of the highly anticipated Marconi Path on the west side of the Park. The new bike path will complete the fourth side of the Park's bike path project: Robert E Lee, Wisner, Harrison, and now, Marconi.

The New Orleans City Park Carousel


The Carousel ride is often called the ‘Flying Horses’ by New Orleans locals. The Carousel is the oldest ride in the William B. Hines Carousel Gardens Amusement Park. It dates back to 1906 but some of the animal figures date back to 1885. The Carousel was originally located on a track of land along City Park Avenue. The Carousel was moved to its current location in 1928, creating what would eventually be City Park’s Amusement Park.

The Carousel has had a few owners in its history including Harry Batt, Sr. Locals may remember Mr. Batt from another local landmark, Pontchartrain Beach. In the late 1980's, William B. Hines loaned Friends of City Park $300,000 to purchase the Carousel from Harry Batt and an additional $50,000 to renovate the Carousel. (Eventually, Mr. Hines forgave all loans. The William B. Hines Carousel Gardens Amusement Park is named for him).


The animals were carved and hand painted by Charles Looff and Charles Carmel. -The Looff animal figures contain faux gem stones and are the older of the two types of animals (older than the Carmel animals). -The animals are loved so much by visitors they need repainting every year to 2 years. They are still hand painted.

The Carousel contains fifty-four animals. 53 are horses plus a lion, giraffe, and camel. There are also 2 chariots for a more stationary ride.


The horses have real horse-hair tails.
Thirty of the horses move up and down and are called ‘flyers’ (thus the Flying Horses nickname).
The Carousel still uses the original motor. -The circular platform on which the animals ‘ride’ is suspended off the ground by 40 metal rods. -The lion weighs 500 lbs. -A few movies have been shot in the Carousel.
The Carousel is only one of 100 hand-carved carousels remaining in the United States and the only one in Louisiana.

Happy 3rd of July - today’s the party!


Enjoy patriotic music with the Marine Corps Band New Orleans and fireworks from the Peristyle!

Join us as we celebrate the 3rd of July!

WHAT:       The annual Happy 3rd of July event promises to be a spectacular show. Join us for the party dressed in your red, white, and blue best! Bring your chairs and blankets to enjoy patriotic music from The Marine Corps Band New Orleans on the Goldring/Woldenberg Great Lawn and fireworks from the top of the Peristyle. Arrive early for patriotic give-a-ways and a great spot on the lawn. The Marine Corps Band New Orleans will play patriotic music including the 1812 Overture, America the Beautiful, and other favorites.
Concessions such as burgers, hot dogs, ice cream, wine, and beer will be available for purchase, or you may bring your own picnic. This year City Park will also be selling snoballs through their new ‘Snoball Concierge Service’ with snoballs made in front of guests while they relax enjoying the music. Due to large crowds and noise from the fireworks, we encourage you to leave your pets at home.
While at the event, connect with us on social media using the hashtag #iheartcitypark.

In an effort to minimize our environmental impact, New Orleans City Park will offer recycling and composting services at the Happy 3rd of July event. Please help City Park reduce event waste by bringing refreshments and food in reusable containers, recycling plastic bottles, and aluminum cans and by composting food waste.

WHEN: Monday, July 3rd

WHERE:    The Goldring/Woldenberg Great Lawn
Dreyfous Avenue and Anseman Street will be closed before, during, and immediately after this event.

HOURS:  7 pm to 9 pm: Marine Introductions and The Marine Corps Band New Orleans
9 pm: Fireworks from the top of the Peristyle

COST:  This is a free event.

Traffic and Parking Information: Dreyfous will be closed at Anseman at 3pm until 11pm.  The City Putt parking lot will be closed to the general public.  All remaining lots will be open to the public.  If dry, we will also utilize Irby Field for parking.  After the event, OPSO will direct all traffic from Victory Drive on to Marconi heading north.

Dogs must be on a leash at all times. Do not stake tents or blankets into the lawn.

Why did the turtle cross the road?

Why did the turtle cross the road?
A few days ago, while driving around the Park, I slowed down for what I thought was just another bump in the oh-so-bumpy New Orleans roads. But unlike most bumps and potholes, this one slowly moved as I approached.  I pulled to the side and stepped out of the car to find a small turtle, moseying across the street, seemingly unaware of the oncoming car.
Afraid she might not make it to the other side of the street before another car came along, I carefully picked up the turtle, helped her to the side of the road, and then went on my way. But as the day continued, I found myself questioning: Why did the turtle cross the road? Where was she trying to go? Had I put her on the right side of the street, closer to her final destination? Or had I accidentally undone hours of arduous trekking, leaving her back at the starting line?

With a little research, I found that turtles, unlike the subject of many “chicken crossing the road” jokes, aren’t just trying to get to the other side. They have a destination and know the way.

Even City Park’s turtles, who spend most of their time in the water, begin over land travel in late spring and early summer, as the females search for suitable nesting sites. While reproductive behavior for each turtle species varies slightly, courtship and mating usually takes place between March and July. Females of some species will mate with several males during this time and store the sperm to fertilize a later clutch of eggs. After mating, the female spends extra time basking in the sun, keeping her eggs warm. Females may wait days or even weeks before egg-laying. When she is ready, the female wanders away from the water to find her nesting site. Although each species may have specific requirements for nesting (distance from water, type of soil, obstacles, or good coverage), all females take the time to ensure the best protection for their young, even if it means crossing a highly trafficked road. Once she has found her spot, the female digs a hole using her hind legs, lays the eggs, and then makes her way back to the water.

So what exactly is Zero Waste?

New Orleans City Park loves its employees and the Earth! It would not be possible to maintain the 1,300 acres of green space that make up New Orleans City Park without the passion and hard work of the Park’s employees. To show that commitment to our people and our environment, New Orleans City Park hosted its annual Employee Appreciation Crawfish Boil recently, and, for the first time ever, it was a nearly Zero Waste event.
With close to 100 attendees, several hundred pounds of crawfish, trays of jambalaya, vegetables, snowballs, cake, and refreshments, the potential for creating waste was huge. But instead of just accepting that trash as the result of a good party, we turned to composting and recycling to give our trash another life!
Eco-friendly; environmentally responsible; sustainable and biodegradable—no matter how you say it, reducing our environmental impact is essential to maintaining the health of our planet. One way we can do this is by incorporating Zero Waste practices into Park events, in our work, and as a daily habit.
So what exactly is Zero Waste? The goal of Zero Waste is to divert as much waste as possible from entering a landfill. As a result of the massive amounts of trash dumped in landfills each day, these sites contain very little oxygen. Trash is buried in an anaerobic (oxygen-free) environment, and decomposition can only occur with the help of slow-working bacteria. As these bacteria break down trash, they release methane, a potent greenhouse gas that traps heat in the atmosphere and contributes to global climate change. According to the EPA, in 2015, landfills were responsible for 15.4% of methane emissions in the atmosphere.  By reducing the amount of waste that we send to landfills, we can also reduce the amount of methane that enters the atmosphere.
It may sound difficult, but with some extra planning, responsible buying, education, and group participation, it is surprisingly easy to move towards Zero Waste! This year at the Employee Appreciation Crawfish Boil, all food and drinks were served in compostable trays, plates, and cups, with compostable forks, spoons, and napkins. As employees finished their meals, they simply dumped food scraps and food containers into a compost bin, to be picked up by The Composting Network and turned into nutrient-rich soil! Employees recycled plastic water bottles and aluminum soda cans, giving them a second life as a beverage container or the possibility of becoming something completely new!  And all that was left to throw in the trash cans were plastic straws, hand-sanitizing towelettes, and disposable tablecloths.
So…how close to Zero Waste did we get? We composted 510 pounds of food waste, collected close to 12 pounds of recycling, and only sent about 18 pounds of trash to the landfill. That means we achieved a 96.7% waste diversion rate, and only sent 3.3% of all event waste to the landfill.
With the help of New Orleans City Park employees, our Park is becoming greener every day. We encourage our visitors to participate in these sustainability efforts by picking up litter in the park and recycling or composting when possible. 
Written by:
Johanna Gundlach
Sustainability Coordinator
jgundlach@nocp.org

How Often Do The Budweiser Clydesdale Horses Shave?

Question: How Often Do The Budweiser Clydesdale Horses Shave?

Answer: Once a week!

The horses spend their downtime in New Orleans City Park during Carnival each year. Merlin, the horse pictured here, weighs in at 2000 lbs, and will walk in many of the parades during Mardi Gras.

First introduced in 1933, after the repeal of Prohibition, the Clydesdales have served as living symbols of not just Budweiser, but also the unconquerable American spirit. Famous worldwide for their appearances in parades, television broadcasts, and even Presidential inaugurations, they're now set to make their most important appearance yet - the one with you!

Meet the Budweiser Clydesdales! The annual Horses, Hops and Cops fundraiser is a wonderful, family-friendly event featuring live music, food and beverages, arts & crafts, face painting, and horses! 

Hang out with the hitch and get your picture taken with these living legends!

-Monday, February 20th

-5pm to 9pm

-Free to the public

-Where: NOPD Mounted Division Stables in New Orleans City Park - Harrison and Marconi Avenues, New Orleans, Louisiana 70124

-Insider tip: Park in the Lakeview neighborhood, and walk over to the stables 

New Bass Record

A new record has been set for bass caught in New Orleans City Park.

On Wednesday, February 8, 2017, Anthony Mike caught a 9.1 lbs beauty bass using a 7" June Bug plastic worm. Fishing near the pier located off Scout Island, it was a banner day for him!

 Anthony, who currently lives in Lafitte, LA,  has been fishing in City Park for over fifteen years.  We will be giving Anthony special recognition at this year's annual Big Bass Fishing Rodeo on Saturday, March 25, 2017.  (The previous record for bass was 9.01 lbs.)

Click here to find out more about the annual Big Bass Fishing Rodeo!

Undine! Chances are you recognize this sculpture but didn’t know her name!

Undine! Chances are you recognize this sculpture but didn’t know her name.

Lily Pond and Conservatory Rose Beds with Undine:

At the entrance to the Conservatory of the Two Sisters in the New Orleans Botanical Garden is the garden’s collection of aquatics. This pond holds a variety of tropical and hardy water lilies and other aquatics from late March to Fall. 

The pool is unfiltered. Submerged plants help to keep the water clean while fish eat any mosquito larvae. Each of the plants in the pond is planted in plastic pots raised off the pond’s floor to six to eight inches below the water surface. In the keyhole of the pond is Undine, (1935) a sculpture by Rose Marie Huth.

The pond is flanked by four formal rose beds holding several varieties of modern roses.

Today’s a great day to visit the New Orleans Botanical Garden! Well, any day is a great day! 
Regular Hours: Open 7 days a week 10am to 5pm Last entry is at 4pm

Gift Shop Open 10am to 5pm

Enter through the Oscar J. Tolmas Building at 5 Victory Avenue.

*Adults: $6

*Children ages 3 to 12: $3

*Children under age 3: Free

*Free admission for Louisiana residents on Wednesday. Please show your ID to the cashier.

Something big is coming soon!

They are coming back! We’re talking about the tulips at Big Lake, of course!

New Orleans City Park staff spent January 12th planting 1000s of tulips bulbs around Big Lake. Their hard work is appreciated by all as it will take about a month and a half for the bulbs to bloom and then we’ll have a massive colorful flower bed.  What a way to welcome spring to New Orleans!
Over 40 types of tulips have been planted. Some of the names of the tulips are pretty interesting: Exotic Emperor, Happy Family, Pinocchio, Blushing Lady, Temple of Beauty, Early Glory, and more!
The tulips will only be in bloom for about 2 weeks. Visit them to brighten your day but be sure to not walk in the flower beds or pick any of the flowers.
New Orleans City Park is proud to be able to bring the simple joy of fresh colorful flowers to the patrons of the Park. We look forward to seeing all of your tulip themed photos posted to social media.

Break Ground!

Construction Begins on a New Stretch of Bike/Walking Path in New Orleans City Park

New Orleans (January 10, 2017)

New Orleans City Park is proud to announce the groundbreaking of the highly anticipated Marconi Bike Path on the west side of the Park. When completed, the new bike path will complete the fourth side of the Park’s bike path project: Robert E Lee, Wisner, Harrison, and now, Marconi.

The Marconi Path is a 10 feet wide concrete pathway stretching over one mile, connecting the existing asphalt along Robert E. Lee to the existing bike route along Harrison Avenue. The path is located on the east side of Marconi, passing along the lagoon edge between oak and cypress trees. There will also be a marked bike crossing point added at Filmore.

The project is a Transportation Enhancement Project, funded in part by the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development, Friends of City Park, and the Federal Highway Administration. The path was designed by Burk Kleinpeter, Inc and the contract, competitively bid, was awarded to Command Construction Industries. The cost of the project is $698,888.00. The project’s anticipated completion date is summer 2017.

Groundbreaking: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 at 10 am

Location:  Corner of Robert E. Lee and Marconi

What they are saying: “For some time Park users have enjoyed designated bike and walking paths off Wisner and Robert E. Lee and on Harrison,” said Park CEO Robert Becker. “The Marconi Bike Path fills in the missing link and will provide a safe and scenic path between Robert E. Lee and Harrison.”

Biking in New Orleans City Park is easy, even if you don’t have your own bike. Bike (and boat) rentals are available at the Boat House on Big Lake: weekdays10 am to 4 pm and weekends 9 am to 4 pm. For more information about renting bikes or bike paths in the Park, visit: NewOrleansCityPark.com/in-the-park/boating-biking or call Wheel Fun Rentals at 300-1289.

About City Park:
City Park: is distinguished by its large menu of sports and recreational activities, attractions for children, and its natural beauty. City Park has a special place in the hearts of generations of New Orleanians and is a must visit for visitors to the city. As a popular place to picnic, play a favorite sport, wander through its gardens or take a boat ride- the park receives millions of visitors each year. It is located in the heart of the city and is the largest recreation area for the entire metropolitan area. Attractions include: City Putt, New Orleans Botanical Garden, Storyland fairytale playground, the Carousel Gardens Amusement Park, and numerous athletic venues. The 1,300 acres of parkland provide enjoyment for young children playing on our playgrounds and walkers, joggers, and bicyclists winding through the park's streets and trails.
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Celebration in the Oaks’ 30th Anniversary!

The 2016 season is Celebration in the Oaks' 30th anniversary!

Celebration in the Oaks in City Park is one of the most spectacular holiday lights festivals in the country, with more than 165,000 visitors pouring into the Park to see the magical winter spectacle. City Park’s famous oaks are swathed in hundreds of thousands of twinkling lights and breathtaking light displays are scattered throughout 25 acres of the Park, including the Botanical Garden, Storyland, and Carousel Gardens. Click here for more information.

Get your tickets here!

Your tickets are good for any night of the event that we are open in the current season. There is no refund due to rain, power outages, and other unforeseen conditions.

*You're so smart to buy your tickets in advance online! You won't have a ticket line to wait in and you'll be in the gates before your friends who didn't buy online.

**Don't forget to bring a print-out of the tickets you buy. You'll need to show them at the gate to get into the event.

***Friends of City Park members please click here for details about your FREE admission!

Tickets for the nightly event, train rides, and individual Amusement Park rides are available for purchase online. Unlimited Ride Bands must be purchased from the Ticket Booth inside Carousel Gardens Amusement Park.

Looking for directions and parking information? We've got you covered! Check out this link.

Don't forget! Santa's here to take photos with the kids or the whole family (through 12/23)! Check out this link for details.

Tickets can also be purchased at The Tomas Center at 5 Victory Avenue.

2016 dates: November 25, 2016 through January 1, 2017

Closed November 28, 29, 30 and December 1

Closed Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve

Open Christmas night

Sunday - Thursday : 6pm -10pm

Friday & Saturday: 6pm -11pm

Last entry to event is 30 minutes prior to closing. Your tickets are good for any night of the event that we are open in the current season. There is no refund due to rain, power outages, and other unforeseen conditions. Train tickets sales on-site will stop one hour before closing. At one hour before closing, you will not be able to get in the train line (only before that time). This also may happen with other amusement rides. Individual train tickets may be used in place of any single ride tickets for any other ride in Carousel Gardens.

Additional information:

-No pets allowed 

-Minor Escort Policy: All minors age 17 and under must be accompanied by an adult 21 years or older. Anyone 21 years or younger should be prepared to show a driver license, state ID or passport before purchasing a ticket for entry.

-Should you need a wheelchair, there is one at the front gate (first come, first served). 

PUBLIC MEETINGS

Update: 

 

We would like to extend a very special thank you to the more than 150 people who attended the first workshop held on Saturday, October 15th. Participants shared dozens of ideas related to the use of Park land in the are generally bounded by Scout Island, I-10, Wisner Avenue, and Harrison Avenue.

Our team of landscape architects will now develop concept plans from the first workshop at the 900+ responses received via an online survey. The concept plans will be shared at a second workshop. The second workshop will be held on Wednesday, November 16th, 2016, from 6 pm to 8 pm in the Arbor Room at Popp Fountain (30 Zachary Taylor Drive).

This process could lead to a formal amendment to the Park's Master Plan.

In the coming weeks, we will be posting additional information on this page regarding input received at the first workshop.

City Park Employees at Water Palooza

Our GIS Technician/Construction Manger Assitant Liz and our Volunteer Manager Tyler are spending the day at Water Palooza in New Orleans East. They are promoting education outreach to bring about awareness of the New Orleans City Park lagoon system and native & invasive species in or around the Park lagoons. Great job y'all!

NEW Art in City Park

We're thrilled to announce a new piece of art has joined the New Orleans City Park family.

Jendiva, a welded steel sculpture by Michael Dunbar, was installed at the Park today. 

It is located on Roosevelt Mall near the front of Tad Gormley Stadium.

Jendiva is a gift from Michael and Susie McLoughlin.

The Vietnam Wall in New Orleans City Park

Contact:  The Office of U.S. Marine Corps Communication 


Telephone:   703-614-1034
           

UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS BRINGS A SCALED VERSION OF THE VIETNAM WALL TO NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA

NEW ORLEANS, LA- Veterans and active duty members of America’s Armed Services travel great distances and make great sacrifices to preserve and protect freedom and liberty, the scaled replica of the Vietnam Wall is just one way we can remember the sacrifices of those that gave all during the Vietnam War. The United States Marine Corps invites you visit the wall when it visits New Orleans in City Park from August 25-28, 2016. The event opens at 2pm on Thursday, August 25th and is open 24/7 through Sunday, August 28th at 6am. A Wreath Laying and Commemoration Ceremony to honor Vietnam Veterans is scheduled for Saturday, August 27th at 10am in City Park on the Goldring/Woldenberg Great Lawn next to the Wall.

The United States Marine Corps brings this wall to you as a part of its Commemorative Plan to honor and remember the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War. The United States Marine Corps is a Commemorative Partner of the Office of the Secretary of Defense’s Vietnam Commemoration Office. One of the objectives of this office is to thank and honor veterans of the Vietnam War, including personnel who were held as prisoners of war (POW), or listed as missing in action (MIA), for their service and sacrifice on behalf of the United States and to thank and honor the families of these Veterans.

The wall is an 80 percent scale version of the Vietnam Wall in Washington, D.C. Across its 360-foot length the wall contains every single name etched on the original. At its apex, the memorial is an impressive eight feet tall.

For more detailed information about this event, please contact the Office of Marine Corps Communications, Community Relations section at 703-614-1034 or visit www.marines.mil

Another Pokeparty!

After a successful first event, City Park has decided to run our Pokemon Go Party special again this weekend. Join your friends playing Pokemon Go for the Pokemon Go Party in Carousel Gardens Amusement Park!

For $6/person receive admission into the amusement park, one ride on the PokeExpress train (hop on, hop off at PokeSpots around the south side of the Park or use the train ride as a place to incubate eggs), access to Pokespots in Carousel Gardens and Storyland, and one special Pokemon Snoball! Lures will be dropped at popular PokeStops in the Park and along the train route. The PokeExpress train will be an extended 30 minute ride that features 2 “hop on/hop off” experiences for riders.

• Guests can enter Carousel Gardens for $6 when they mention the promotion.  The app does not have to be shown to gain entry. Anyone may purchase the promotional voucher.

• $6 admission includes one train ride and one Pokemon Snoball.

• Guests who are already Season Pass holders and Friends of City Park members may enter using their benefits as normal.  Friends of City Park members will not receive discounts if they do not purchase the promo deal. 

• All other prices will remain as normal: $4/ride and $18/per unlimited ride band

• Pokemon Snoball will be strawberry/wedding cake flavored with chocolate drizzle and will resemble the iconic Poke Ball.  Guests may use their voucher for any flavored snoball.  Additional snoballs may be purchased for $3.

WHEN:
Friday, July 22; Saturday, July 23: 11am to 9pm

Sunday, July 24: Sunday: 11am to 6pm

A Pokemon Go Party in New Orleans City Park

Join your friends playing Pokemon Go for the Pokemon Go Party in Carousel Gardens Amusement Park!

For $6/person receive admission into the amusement park, one ride on the PokeExpress train (hop on, hop off at PokeSpots around the south side of the Park or use the train ride as a place to incubate eggs), access to Pokespots in Carousel Gardens and Storyland, and one special Pokemon Snoball! Lures will be dropped at popular PokeStops in the Park and along the train route. The PokeExpress train will be an extended 30 minute ride that features 2 “hop on/hop off” experiences for riders.

• Guests can enter Carousel Gardens for $6 when they mention the promotion.  The app does not have to be shown to gain entry. Anyone may purchase the promotional voucher.

• $6 admission includes one train ride and one Pokemon Snoball.

• Guests who are already Season Pass holders and Friends of City Park members may enter using their benefits as normal.  Friends of City Park members will not receive discounts if they do not purchase the promo deal. 

• All other prices will remain as normal: $4/ride and $18/per unlimited ride band

• Pokemon Snoball will be strawberry/wedding cake flavored with chocolate drizzle and will resemble the iconic Poke Ball.  Guests may use their voucher for any flavored snoball.  Additional snoballs may be purchased for $3.

WHEN:
Friday, July 15; Saturday, July 16: 11am to 9pm

Sunday, July 17: Sunday: 11am to 6pm


About City Park:
City Park: is distinguished by its large menu of sports and recreational activities, attractions for children, and its natural beauty. City Park has a special place in the hearts of generations of New Orleanians and is a must visit for visitors to the city. As a popular place to picnic, play a favorite sport, wander through its gardens or take a boat ride- the park receives millions of visitors each year. It is located in the heart of the city and is the largest recreation area for the entire metropolitan area. Attractions include: City Putt, New Orleans Botanical Garden, Storyland fairytale playground, the Carousel Gardens Amusement Park, and numerous athletic venues. The 1,300 acres of parkland provide enjoyment for young children playing on our playgrounds and walkers, joggers, and bicyclists winding through the park's streets and trails.
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Return of the Allstate Sugar Bowl Tennis Tournament

After nearly two decades the Allstate Sugar Bowl Tennis Tournament is returning to New Orleans City Park. Considered to be the finest tennis facility in the state, the event will be played at the City Park/Pepsi Tennis Center.


The Allstate Sugar Bowl Tennis Tournament is sanctioned by the United State Tennis Association and is expected to draw top players, 14 to 18 years old, from around the nine states of the Southern Section.  New Orleans City Park will run the tournament with the support of the Louisiana Tennis Association.

The Allstate Sugar Bowl hosts and sponsors over 50 annual amateur athletic events to promote tourism and generate economic impact for the region.

Representatives of the tournament and the Sugar Bowl will be present.

WHEN:
Press Conference:
Tuesday, June 28th at 1 pm at the City Park/Pepsi Tennis Center

Allstate Sugar Bowl Tennis Tournament:
Saturday to Monday, November 12th, 13th, 14th
City Park/Pepsi Tennis Center: 5900 Marconi Drive, New Orleans, LA 70124

CONTACT:
For further information: 504-830-7235


About the Allstate Sugar Bowl:

The Allstate Sugar Bowl has established itself as one of the premier college football bowl games, having hosted 27 national champions, 88 Hall of Fame players, 47 Hall of Fame coaches and 17 Heisman Trophy winners in its 82-year history. The 83rd Allstate Sugar Bowl Football Classic, featuring teams from the Big 12 and the SEC, will be played on January 2, 2017. In addition to football, the Sugar Bowl Committee annually invests over $1.3 million into the community through the hosting and sponsorship of sporting events, awards and clinics. Through these efforts, the organization supports and honors over 25,000 student-athletes each year, while injecting over $2 billion into the local economy in the last decade. For more information, visit AllstateSugarBowl.org.

Free Zumba Classes in New Orleans City Park: Class Dates Added

WHAT: Join your friends for free Zumba classes at the Peristyle in New Orleans City Park. New Orleans City Park, Elmwood Fitness Center, and Ochsner are excited to bring the community yet another way to exercise in the Park. Come ready to dance away stress and have some fun. Wear appropriate workout attire, gym shoes, and bring H2O as you’ll work up a sweat!

WHEN:      

Rain or shine
Saturdays: June 11th through September 24th 
8 am until 8:45 am

WHERE:  The Peristyle in New Orleans City Park (near the intersection of Dreyfous and Anseman)

COST: Free and no reservations are needed

For further information call (504)733-1600.

Merit Award from the AIA Gulf States Region

This article is reblogged. To read the ariginal article, please click here.

The LOOP Pavilion, designed and fabricated by City Center, has won a Merit Award from the AIA Gulf States Region 2016 Honor Awards for exemplary design.

A City Center design/build studio worked with community partner LOOP [Louisiana Outdoor Outreach Program] to design and construct a shade pavilion on Scout Island in City Park. LOOP engages urban students in outdoor education programs through adventure-based activities on their challenge course in City Park.

City Park and the staff of LOOP reached out to the TCC when they recognized a need for program expansion and support. Their site was difficult to access and far from any seating, storage or shaded gathering spaces. After engaging LOOP staff to assess needs, students designed a shade pavilion that incorporates storage and seating into a large shade structure used for gathering before and after challenge course activities. The design is inspired by the tree canopy surrounding the challenge course. It uses blank aluminum traffic signs as a modular, exterior grade unit to create an abstracted, high-performing canopy overhead. In keeping with the context of the adjacent ropes course structure, the canopy is suspended with steel cable from a larger steel structure in a way that creates an undulating complex curve. The seating is built into an earth berm created by reusing railroad ties from the St. Charles Ave. streetcar line. The studio partnered with TSA’s Milhaus CNC lab to design and fabricate the joints that hold the aluminum canopy together.

The pavilion allows LOOP to provide better, safer programs for the students with whom they work and allow revenue generating options by attracting professional groups to use the course. In 2014, LOOP won a Merit Award in Divine Detail from the AIA New Orleans.

Location

Scout Island, City Park

Project Leads

Emilie Taylor, Sam Richards

Project Team

Dan Ackerley, Madison Baker, Casey Bemis, Michelle Carroll, Rachel Conques, Jose Cotto, John Coyle, Maggie Easley, Ellen Hearle, Emma Jasinki, Kate Luxner, Sarah Satterlee, Meredith Zelenka

Partnering Organization

LOOP, New Orleans City Park

Special Thanks

Dash Lumber, Tulane School of Architecture’s Milhaus, Regional Transit Authority, Walter Zehner

Awards

AIA New Orleans, Award of Merit 2014, Divine Detail
AIA Gulf States, Award of Merit 2016, Architecture

Park and Putt Promotion

WHAT: City Park is proud to announce the parking lot next to the First NBC sponsored City Putt is complete and ready for patrons’ cars! The former site of tennis courts, the parking lot will hold 64 cars. New plaza areas have also been built between the entrance to City Putt and the Goldring/Woldenberg Great Lawn.

We want to thank the visitors who have patiently allowed construction to continue. We are so thrilled to have the parking lot, plazas, and sidewalks completed, we’re offering a Park and Putt promotion. For the Father’s Day weekend, June 17th through 19th, tickets for City Putt will be BOGO (buy one, get one free). Each day of the promotion, players who get a hole-in-one at either of the courses, will have their name placed in a hopper to win a $100 cash gift card (10 winners) or tickets to City Park Attractions (ten winners). City Putt will also offer free popcorn for our guests playing mini golf.
City Putt is a 36-hole mini golf complex with two courses: the Louisiana Course highlights cultural themes and cities from around the state; the New Orleans Course showcases streets and iconic themes from around the city, with signs detailing the city’s historic sites at each hole. City Putt is 100 percent ADA accessible.
New Orleans City Park wants to send a special shout-out of thanks to First NBC for being City Putt's title sponsor. The City Park family is so grateful to have First NBC on board!
Looking for a unique location for a birthday party or special event? City Putt is the only mini golf complex in New Orleans! City Putt’s Clubhouse has two party rooms available to rent and birthday/event packages available. For more information or to book a room for a birthday party, call (504) 483-9458.

WHEN: June 17th and 18th from 10 am to midnight (last rental at 11pm)
June 19th from 10 am to 10pm (last rental at 9pm) 

WHERE: City Putt: 8 Victory Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70119

EVENT PRICE: Buy one round; get one round free:
1 Course Play Ages 13+ $8
1 Course Play Children (4-12) $6
2nd round in same visit $4
Children (0-3) Free

REGULAR HOURS:  Sunday, Tuesday - Thursday: 10am to 10pm (last rental at 9pm)
Monday: only open for corporate/private events
Friday & Saturday: 10am to midnight (last rental at 11pm)

ABOUT CITY PARK:
City Park: is distinguished by its large menu of sports and recreational activities, attractions for children, and its natural beauty. City Park has a special place in the hearts of generations of New Orleanians and is a must visit for visitors to the city. As a popular place to picnic, play a favorite sport, wander through its gardens or take a boat ride- the Park receives millions of visitors each year. It is located in the heart of the city and is the largest recreation area for the entire metropolitan area. Attractions include: City Putt, New Orleans Botanical Garden, Storyland fairytale playground, the Carousel Gardens Amusement Park, and numerous athletic venues. The 1,300 acres of parkland provide enjoyment for young children playing on our playgrounds and walkers, joggers, and bicyclists winding through the Park's streets and trails.
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We LOVE our Volunteers!

We LOVE our volunteers! 

 

Today the International School of Louisiana worked on phase 3 of the NEW Butterfly Garden. 

New Trees in the Park

80 New Crepe Myrtles Planted in City Park

New Orleans (May 16, 2016)

Wisner Boulevard between Robert E. Lee and Harrison is not the most heavily trafficked section of the Park these days since the Wisner I-610 Overpass has been removed.  If you do travel down Wisner, however, you’ll notice that large crepe myrtles were planted in the neutral ground this week.

In all 80 trees were planted. The trees were installed by Charvet’s Garden Center and are from LaFleur’s Nursery in Washington, Louisiana. The trees cost $39,600.00. In a group effort, funding for this project was provided by the Department of Parks and Parkways Plant a Tree Trust Fund and New Orleans City Park.

To prepare for the planting, the Department of Parks and Parkways removed 24 diseased or damaged crepe myrtle trees on the site and ground each stump location plus ten additional former tree locations. The new trees are located in the Wisner neutral ground between the new interstate 610 overpass currently under construction and Robert E. Lee Boulevard.

Why Wisner you may ask? Wisner has seen significant increased traffic – pedestrian, cyclist, and vehicular – over the past decade and is a compelling portion of the Bayou Saint John and New Orleans City Park experience. The Department of Public Works will be adding a bike lane and pedestrian walkway to the new Wisner overpass. This will greatly increase opportunities for exploration along this corridor. In addition, this project supports the ongoing management of the City’s urban forest priorities.

Big and beautiful, the new trees will hopefully put on a colorful pink show later this year.

About City Park:
City Park: is distinguished by its large menu of sports and recreational activities, attractions for children, and its natural beauty. City Park has a special place in the hearts of generations of New Orleanians and is a must visit for visitors to the city. As a popular place to picnic, play a favorite sport, wander through its gardens or take a boat ride- the park receives millions of visitors each year. It is located in the heart of the city and is the largest recreation area for the entire metropolitan area. Attractions include: City Putt, New Orleans Botanical Garden, Storyland fairytale playground, the Carousel Gardens Amusement Park, and numerous athletic venues. The 1,300 acres of parkland provide enjoyment for young children playing on our playgrounds and walkers, joggers, and bicyclists winding through the park's streets and trails.
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48 Hours of Birding (and Other Things): New Orleans

City Park. Photo: Rebecca Ratliff/Dreamstime

This article is reposted in this blog piece. You can view the original post by clicking here. 

 

Laid-back birding in this urban gem gives "The Big Easy" a new meaning.
   

By Karl Mechem
April 01, 2016
Popular Stories


New Orleans is known for a lot of things—great food, mild debauchery, streetcars named “Desire”—but it has yet to land on the map of major birding destinations.

That’s a big mistake. The Gulf Coast city lies in a perfect spot for nearly year-round birding. In winter it provides safe harbor for songbirds that have fled northern climes. Open bodies of water, such as those in Bayou Sauvage National Wildlife Refuge, host huge populations of wintering waterfowl. And in spring, neotropical beauties like warblers and orioles drop into the region, exhausted from their journey across the Gulf. Like tourists in the French Quarter, the birds greedily consume all the local fare they can find. Even a rookie birder can rack up a huge list, despite the city’s savory distractions. Spring in New Orleans does not disappoint—the birds are as accommodating as the crawfish and oysters are fresh. (A note on Mardi Gras: It usually happens in February, which is also a great time for birding. Most of the habitats remain unscathed during the festivities.)

Day 1

Beignets Before Birding; 8 a.m.

The classic, must-have breakfast in New Orleans is beignets and café au lait at Cafe du Monde in Jackson Square. But the beignets are as good or better at a place in City Park, which is also a great birding spot. The Morning Call Coffee Stand is a 140-year-old, sit-down cafe where there are no lines and where beignets and coffee cost you less than five dollars.

Cross the street and enter the New Orleans Museum of Art’s lovely sculpture garden, where birds basking in the tall trees and lush ponds will likely distract you from the art. Contine walking around the museum and find the Big Lake, a good place to check for herons, Anhingas, and White Ibises.

In the center of the park—north of Harrison Avenue and west of the traffic circle—is a woodlot called Couturie Forest. Known locally as a great migrant trap, these trees host warblers and other songbirds that have just traveled over the Gulf. Magnolia and Bay-breasted Warblers, along with many of their neotropical cousins, focus on gorging, while largely ignoring their human stalkers. Here’s your chance to get close and study up: learn your markings—say, your supercilium (eyebrow) from your auriculars (cheek)—and your different feather types.

Bridal Open House in New Orleans City Park

WHAT: More than 160 years in the making, New Orleans City Park invites discerning soon-to-be brides and grooms to a Bridal Open House.

Bridal parties will tour the Pavilion of the Two Sisters, The Arbor Room at Popp Fountain, and the Parkview Terrace. You’ll have an opportunity to meet the staff who will work with you to plan your dream wedding in City Park. You’ll hear about the catering and bar options available with a City Park wedding.

• Bring your cameras, your family, and friends.
• Enter a free raffle while you’re at the event.
• There is no cost to attend this open house.
• This event will take place rain or shine.
• For more information please call 504-488-2896.

WHEN: Sunday, June 5, 2016 – 1 pm to 3 pm
 
WHERE: Throughout New Orleans City Park: the Pavilion of the Two Sisters, the Arbor Room at Popp Fountain, and the Parkview Terrace (above Morning Call). You may start the open house at any of the three venues.

June Under the Moon

WHAT: No one will want to miss this event. The June Under the Moon party will be a blast. Tell all your friends to meet you at Carousel Gardens Amusement Park in New Orleans City Park for all the rides you can handle for one low price. Oh, and your beer's included in the price! You’ll leave with prizes and give-a-ways, too. There will also be delicious food (some included in ticket price and some for purchase).
We’ll serve Tito’s Vodka Lemonade. Don’t forget to try the June Under the Moon vodka soaked gummy bears. Wine will be available for purchase.
Beer: Budweiser, Modelo, Shock Top, Parker's Amber Ale by Tin Roof Brewing Co., Michelob Ultra.
We’ll be turning the Carousel and Bumper Car rides into a disco with black lights and music.
Rides! Rides! Rides! Ladybug Roller Coaster - it's BACK and we KNOW you want to ride it!
Plus: Wacky Shack, Miniature Train, Carousel, Tilt-a-Whirl, Musik Express, Bumper Cars, Slime Buckets, Coney Tower, Scrambler, and the Ferris wheel.

A few things to remember:
-Purchase tickets online at NewOrleansCityPark.com.  We expect this event to sell out before the event date. Remember to print your ticket at home and bring it with you. We will be scanning tickets at the entrance gate.
-You must be 21 years old or older to attend this event. We will be checking IDs. No children are allowed at the event.
- Be social! Please! Use #iheartcitypark and #JuneMoon
- Wear your Amusement Park best…AKA Dress casual y’all!


WHEN: Friday, June 3, 2016
TIME: 7:30 pm to 10:30 pm
WHERE: Carousel Gardens Amusement Park: Enter on Victory Avenue
PRICE: $30/person Click here to purchase

ABOUT CITY PARK:
City Park: is distinguished by its large menu of sports and recreational activities, attractions for children, and its natural beauty. City Park has a special place in the hearts of generations of New Orleanians and is a must visit for visitors to the city. As a popular place to picnic, play a favorite sport, wander through its gardens or take a boat ride- the park receives millions of visitors each year. It is located in the heart of the city and is the largest recreation area for the entire metropolitan area. Attractions include: City Putt, New Orleans Botanical Garden, Storyland fairytale playground, the Carousel Gardens Amusement Park, and numerous athletic venues. The 1,300 acres of parkland provide enjoyment for young children playing on our playgrounds and walkers, joggers, and bicyclists winding through the park's streets and trails.
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Keeping the Oak Trees Safe

With grant funding, bollards are being installed on the south side of Harrison Avenue
between Wisner and the roundabout.  The bollards will protect adjacent oaks by keeping
cars from parking on top of the tree roots.  We have built a small parking lot off
Harrison for patrons to use and encourage others to enter that area of the Park by
parking in the Pan American parking lot.

Tree Facts
* A mature tree absorbs 120 to 240 pounds of pollutants every year.

* The average person consumes about 386 pounds of oxygen per year. The average, healthy tree (say, a 32-foot ash tree) can produce about 260 pounds of oxygen annually. Two trees supply the oxygen needs of one person every year.

* If every American planted just one tree, the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere would be reduced by one billion pounds annually. This is nearly 5 percent of the amount that humans pump into the atmosphere every year.

* A mature bald cypress can absorb as much as 880 gallons of water in one day!

A New Shade Covering at the Playground

In August of 2015, New Orleans City Park cut the ribbon on a new playground at the already popular Festival Grounds. Located between Christian Brothers School and the Reunion Shelter on Friedrichs Avenue, the playground sits inside a paved concrete circle. It is that circular shape that lent its geometric details to the playgrounds name: Sir Cumference.

The Sir Cumference playground includes climbing areas, monkey bars, a slide, balance beams, and musical instruments for kids to play. The playground is geared towards children ages 5 to 12 years old. Adult supervision is recommended at all times. Parking is easy for parents in the lot just a few feet from the playground. Restrooms are located on the opposite side of the Reunion Shelter.

AND NOW the Sir Cumference playground now sports a beautiful new shade covering. 

This playground joins the City Park family as one of four playgrounds in the Park. The other playgrounds are the Stanley Ray Playground (on Dreyfous), the Blue Starbucks Playground (on Stadium), and Storyland (on Victory).

New Orleans City Park Earth Day 2016

WHAT: Earth Day promises to be a great event!  Celebrate living a ‘green life’ with your friends in City Park. The event will take place along Victory Avenue on the plaza in front of the Oscar J. Tolmas Center.

Receive information on living a sustainable way of life from local businesses and non-profit organizations that contribute to a greener lifestyle.

Bring the kids! Have the kids participate in activities using recycled materials to make an art project. Children can also test their recycling knowledge and win prizes with the “Sort the Trash” game.

SEED Restaurant will perform cooking demos and you’ll get to taste the local, organic, and purely natural dishes.

China Lights in City Park Postponed Due to Rain (4/1/16)

China Lights in City Park Postponed Due to Rain (4/1/16)

New Orleans (April 1, 2016)

WHAT: Due to impending inclement weather passing through New Orleans, China Lights will not be open tonight, April 1, 2016.

Already have a ticket for tonight? No problem! China Lights tickets are good for any night of the current season that the event is open. There is no refund due to rain, power outages, and other unforeseen conditions.

THE EVENT: More than 30 extraordinary, blazingly bright silk covered structures will fill the Botanical Garden.  Picture an incredible glowing dragon 131-feet long or a three-story, lit-from-within pagoda towering high enough to be seen from almost any vantage point. Plus the festival will include live entertainment and Chinese food with New Orleans flair – think muffelatta egg rolls!
Live entertainment each night in the large tent. Be sure to visit the Education Exhibit located in the Garden Study Center. See dozens of dazzlingly colorful lighted displays created at City Park by a team of 100 artisans and technical staff from Sichuan Tianyu, located in Zigong, China.

The event runs February 23 through May 1, 2016 in the New Orleans Botanical Garden. Enter event through The Tolmas Center at 5 Victory Avenue.

Botanical Garden featuring China Lights (Daytime)
February 23 through May 1, 2016
10am to 5pm (Last ticket sold at 4pm)
*$12/person ages 13+
*$8/children ages 3 to 12
*Children under 3 free
*Group (25 people +) $10/person
Tickets must be purchased at the Oscar J. Tolmas Center (5 Victory Avenue). No Friends of City Park discount.
______________________________

China Lights (Night time):
February 23 through May 1, 2016
Open: Sunday, Tuesday through Thursday: 6pm to 10pm
Friday and Saturday: 6pm to 11pm (Closed Monday)
Last entry 1 hour before close.
In the New Orleans Botanical Garden (separate from the Botanical Garden Daytime entrance fee)
*$18/person ages 13+
*$12/children ages 3 to 12
*Children under 3 free
*Group (25 people +) $15/person
Tickets may be purchased online and at The Tolmas Center (5 Victory Avenue). No Friends of City Park discount. Bring your printed ticket to the event.

Group tickets may be purchased at the Tolmas Center. Group tickets may not be purchased online.

Live entertainment: weeknights: 6:30 pm and 8 pm; weekend nights: 6:30 pm, 8 pm, and 9:15 pm

For more information please visit CityParkPresentsChinaLights.com or call 482-4888.

Please be sure to print tickets and bring them to the event to be presented at the admission gate.

Weir (noun \ˈwer, ˈwir\) :

Weir (noun \ˈwer, ˈwir\) : a low wall or dam built across a stream or river to raise the level of the water or to change the direction of its flow

Whether you call it a dam or a weir, City Park is getting a new one at the Park on Zachary Taylor Drive. 

So what, who cares, you say? 

It’s actually a pretty big deal.  The existing weir dates back to the WPA era (1930s) and has limited functionality. The new weir, which will drain lagoons between I-610 and Harrison Avenue, will have the ability to better manage water flow. 
For example, we will be able to reduce the levels of the lagoons prior to anticipated large storms so that our lagoon system can hold more water before discharging it into the city’s storm drains.

FREE Zumba Classes at City Park

WHAT: Join your friends for free Zumba classes at the Peristyle in New Orleans City Park. New Orleans City Park, Elmwood Fitness Center, and Ochsner are excited to bring the community yet another way to exercise in the Park. Come ready to dance away stress and have some fun. Wear appropriate workout attire, gym shoes, and bring H2O as you’ll work up a sweat!

WHEN:      

Rain or shine
Saturdays: April 2nd through May 7th
8 am until 8:45 am

WHERE:  The Peristyle in New Orleans City Park (near the intersection of Dreyfous and Anseman)

COST: Free and no reservations are needed

For further information call (504)733-1600.

Spring Garden Show 2016

The annual Spring Garden Show in the New Orleans Botanical Garden invites visitors to explore the beautiful Botanical Garden, more than 50 horticultural exhibits, family friendly activities, and enjoy educational ‘Walk and Talk’ lectures. The festival includes plant sales, garden product sales, a Plant Health Clinic, a Children’s Discovery Zone, an art market, and live music on the Haspel Outdoor Stage.

Admission to the Spring Garden Show does not include admission to China Lights.

WHEN:
Saturday, April 2nd & Sunday, April 3rd, 2016
Saturday 9 am – 5 pm & Sunday 10 am – 4 pm

WHERE:
New Orleans Botanical Garden, 3 Victory Ave., New Orleans, LA 70124
Enter on Victory Drive. There is free parking available on Park streets and in the parking lot next to City Putt.

COST:
Admission is $8.00 for Adults and $4.00 for Children 5 to 12. Children under 5 years old and Friends of City Park members receive free admission. Admission to the Spring Garden Show does not include admission to China Lights.

CONTACT:
Lee Rouse, LSU AgCenter: phone 504-483-9471 or email lrouse@agcenter.lsu.edu

The Spring Garden Show is sponsored by the LSU AgCenter in cooperation with the Metro Area Horticultural Foundation and the New Orleans Botanical Garden.

Educational ‘Walk and Talk’ Lectures:
(Each meets in the Rose Garden)
Saturday, April 2nd
11:30 am to 12:30 pm: “Rose Rosette and Other Plant Diseases” –Dr. Raj Singh, LSU AgCener
1:30 pm to 2 pm: “NOLA Style Butterfly Gardening” –Linda Auld, Barber Laboratory
2 pm to 3:30 pm: “Backyard Spring Vegetables” –Sarah Everhart, LSU AgCenter

Sunday, April 3rd
12:30 pm to 1:30 pm: “Natives” –Dan Gill, LSU AgCenter
2 pm to 3 pm: “History of the New Orleans Botanical Garden” –Susan Capley, New Orleans Botanical Garden Education Director

Live Music Haspel Outdoor Stage Schedule:
Saturday, April 2nd
10 am to 1 pm: French Bread
1 pm to 2 pm: Kipp Central City Jazz Band
2 pm to 5 pm: Dapper Dandies

Sunday, April 3rd
11 am to 1 pm: Necessary Gentlemen
2 pm to 4 pm: Crazy Whiskey

China Lights

More than 30 extraordinary, blazingly bright silk covered structures  fill the Botanical Garden.  We’ll have 100s of lanterns to delight you at every turn. Picture an incredible glowing dragon 131-feet long! Or a three-story, lit-from-within pagoda towering high enough to be seen from almost any vantage point in the garden. Plus dozens of dazzlingly colorful lighted displays created by a team of artisans and technical staff from Sichuan Tianyu, located in Zigong, China.

These beautiful objects have been enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of people in Europe, most recently in Rotterdam, the Netherlands and, and in the United states first in Spokane, Washington and now soon in New Orleans.

February 23, 2016 through May 1, 2016

In the New Orleans Botanical Garden in New Orleans City Park

Click here to purchase tickets.

See the lanterns during the day or view them at night. Please read below for details.

Botanical Garden featuring China Lights (Daytime)
10am to 5pm (Last ticket sold at 4pm)
February 23 through May 1, 2016

Closed Monday

*$12/person ages 13+
*$8/children ages 3 to 12
*Children under 3 free
*Group (25 people +) $10/person
Tickets must be purchased at the Oscar J. Tolmas Center (5 Victory Avenue)
No Friends of City Park discount or free admission in to the Botanical Garden during this exhibit. Bring your printed ticket to the event.
______________________________

China Lights (Night time):
February 23 through May 1, 2016
Open: Sunday, Tuesday through Thursday: 6pm to 10pm
Friday and Saturday: 6pm to 11pm (Closed Monday) (Last ticket sold 30 minutes before close)

In the New Orleans Botanical Garden (separate from the Botanical Garden Daytime entrance fee)
*$18/person ages 13+
*$12/children ages 3 to 12
*Children under 3 free
*Group (25 people +) $15/person
Adult tickets may be purchased online and at the Tolmas Center.

Group and Children tickets may be purchased at the Tolmas Center, and the Administration building. Group and Children tickets may not be purchased online.

No Friends of City Park discount or free admission in to the Botanical Garden during this exhibit. Bring your printed ticket to the event. Closed Mondays.

On March 4th three lantern exhibits will be closed until 8pm.

China Lights tickets are good for any night of the current season that the event is open. There is no refund due to rain, power outages, and other unforeseen conditions.

Please call 482.4888 with questions about China Lights.

Cliack Here To Purchase tickets

Photos with Santa at Celebration in the Oaks


Bring the kids! Or take a fun photo with the adults! Santa loves everyone!

Each night at Celebration in the Oaks through December 23, bring the kids (of any age!) to get their photos taken with Santa! Romaguera Photography takes the photos you'll cherish for a lifetime.

Santa is available each night of the week and Mrs. Claus joins Santa for photos on Friday and Saturday nights!

Photos are taken in the gazebo behind the Carousel. Scroll to the bottom of the page for a money saving coupon from Romaguera Photography! Please be sure to read the fine print on the coupon. You can print it and bring it with you or show it to the photographer on your smart phone. 

 

Celebration in the Oaks:

The 2015-2016 season: November 27 - January 2 Closed: 11/30 - 12/3, 12/24, and 12/31

Times: Sunday - Thursday : 6pm -10pm Friday & Saturday: 6pm -11pm

Last entry to event is 20 minutes prior to closing. 

Click here for more information. 

First Annual City Park Employee Pumpkin Decorating Contest

This was the first year of the Annual City Park Employee Pumpkin Decorating Contest.

First place winner was the 'Cinderella Carriage' pumpkin submitted by the NOLA City Bark staff. 

Which is your favorite?

After the pumpkin fun, the employees enjoyed lunch, cake, and a spirited game of mini golf at City Putt! 

Young Volunteers Make a Difference in City Park

Holy Cross brought 350 students to the Park today to work in Tad Gormley Stadium.  They did some horticulture work along with a large amount of painting.  The results were immediate and impressive.

Each year Holy Cross has a boys to men volunteer event where they pair eighth graders with twelfth graders.  The pairs work together and do some “bonding”. 

So let’s recap:  It’s an absolutely gorgeous fall day in New Orleans.  350 Holy Cross Students invested significant sweat equity at Tad Gormley Stadium.  Young men spent some quality time together.  What’s not to like?

Thank you so much Holy Cross!

Click here to find out how you or your group can make a difference in City Park by volunteering.

Look! A New AND Old Sculpture!

The Wave of the World originally debuted at the 1984 World's Fair in New Orleans but this week is debuted at New Orleans City Park after many years forgotten in storage. The 17 feet high two-ton sculpture includes a water feature and is situated on the walking bath at The Big Lake.

While Lynda Benglis had alrady concieved the idea for the sculpture it came to life when the 1984 Louisiana World Exposition selected her as one of the winners of a competition to design a sculpture for the fair, the theme of which was "The World of Rivers — Fresh Water as a Source of Life."

Benglis, from Lake Charles, grew up in nature by traversing the bayous and canals of southwest Loisiana inspired by the small waves and ripples. Clearly this beginning inspired her amazing art.

Benglis visited City Park this week for the dedication of The Wave. The dedication included a conversation with Benglis that was both educational and entertaining.

The New Orleans Museum of Art in partnership with the Helis Foundation made this video describing the making and the journey of The Wave. https://youtu.be/7PdfHCGBI1A

Written by: Geneva Longlois-Marney

Major Gifts and Planned Giving Officer

gmarney@nocp.org

City Park Hosts the International Visitor Leadership Program

An NOCDC photo

New Orleans City Park's CEO, Bob Becker, hosted a multi-regional "Parks & Protected Areas Management" International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) group on Friday August 28, 2015. The group visitied the United States though the New Orleans Diplomacy Council. 

Bob Becker discussed biodiversity conservation and environmental nonprofit management. 

New Orleans City Park was happy to host the group from New Orleans Citizen Diplomacy Council and we hope everyone left the discussion and then went to Morning Call for hot beignets! 

Katrina Anniversary Service Day

"Everybody can be great...becuase anybody can serve. You don't have to have a college degree to serve. You don't have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love." -Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. 

Katrina is a tragedy we will never forget. But today....today we celebrate the human spirit. We have over 300 volunteers giving their time to New Orleans City Park today as part of the K10 City Wide Day of Service! 

They're from several sources, including Xavier University, Tulane University, Sacred Heart Academy, Mid City Rotary Club, along with many individuals who volunteered on their own.

Today the volunteers worked to mulch the trails in Couturie Forest. After Hurricane Katrina, Couturie Forest became a laboratory for the rebirth of a forest. The more often you visit, the more you’ll see the gradual, natural revitalization taking place, including the restoration of a tree canopy, the eradication of invasive species, and the growth process of thousands of new saplings. Couturie Forest wouldn’t be possible without the support and work of volunteers.

Volunteers also worked today to cut down the invasive specie Chinese tallow trees near Pan American Stadium. Trees play a vital role in City Park’s natural beauty.

Since Hurricane Katrina, Park officials have planted more than 6,500 live oaks, cypress, magnolia, and pine trees. City Park is home to 16,000 trees – each tree removes 120 - 240 pounds of pollutants from the air each year.

In an effort to preserve City Park’s diverse collection of trees, the Park incorporates tree trimming and root protection standards into all construction documents. In the coming years, Couturie Forest alone is expected to double in size from 30 to 60 acres.

Check out our City Park Invasive Species Guide (here) for more information on the invasive types of trees we fight each day in City Park. 

We're so lucky to have volunteers and we thank you all from the bottom of our hearts! 

The work doesn't stop today; however, we continue to need volunteers throughout the year to keep City Park moving in a positive direction. Should you, your friends or family, or an organization want to volunteer in CIty Park, please get in touch with our Volunteer Manager, Earl Sires. Earl works hard each day to keep the Park looking its best by using both the time volunteers put into the Park but also the donations that often come with corporations volunteering. Please contact Earl at ESires@nocp.org. 

Check out this link to see information on the Katrina Then and Now boards placed at Big Lake now through September 2015. 

Consider a donation to the Carousel

Say the name Beau Bassich or just think of him and I bet a smile comes to your face. 
It is all but impossible to think of Beau without feeling good and being happy. 
Beau always greeted me in the same manner:  “Hey Hoppaah.”  What was special was that he would then look me in the eye and convey that there was no one else in the world he would rather be talking to.  It is a memory I will cherish and try to emulate.

Beau loved all parts of the park, but none more than the Carousel.  It is because of his friends and family that the park now has a Carousel Endowment.  As you can see in the picture, it started at $125,000 and has grown to more than $300,000. 
Beau’s family has asked for donations to the Carousel Endowment in his memory.  If you would like to make a donation, please make your check payable to Friends of City Park and mail to:

Friends of City Park
1 Palm Drive
New Orleans, LA   70124

Please write “Carousel Endowment” in the memo line.

Or click here to give electronically

Thank you in advance.

-John Hopper, Chief Development Officer & Director of Public Affairs

JHopper@nocp.org

City Park Dedicates a New Playground

Today, New Orleans City Park cut the ribbon on a new playground at the already popular Festival Grounds. Located between Christian Brothers School and the Reunion Shelter on Friedrichs Avenue, the playground sits inside a paved concrete circle. It is that circular shape that lent its geometric details to the playgrounds name: Sir Cumference.

The Sir Cumference playground includes climbing areas, monkey bars, a slide, balance beams, and musical instruments for kids to play. The playground is geared towards children ages 5 to 12 years old. Adult supervision is recommended at all times. Parking is easy for parents in the lot just a few feet from the playground. Restrooms are located on the opposite side of the Reunion Shelter.

This playground joins the City Park family as one of four playgrounds in the Park. The other playgrounds are the Stanley Ray Playground (on Dreyfous), the Blue Starbucks Playground (on Stadium), and Storyland (on Victory).

New Bike Racks at New Orleans City Park

With the help of a $50,536.90 grant from the Federal Highway Administration’s Recreational Trails Program through the Louisiana Office of State Parks, New Orleans City Park is working to upgrade its bicycle infrastructure to meet the recreational and transportation needs of the community. 

Bike parking has been installed in 15 locations throughout the Park with the capacity for over 100 bicycles. Visitors can bike to a wide number of locations, find secure parking for their bicycle, and then engage in a number of activities from visiting a playground or riding in a paddle boat to running around the practice track or exercising on the outdoor fitness equipment at the Festival Grounds. 

In addition to bike parking, a self-repair bike center featuring an industrial tire pump, repair stand, and tools is located at the entrance to Couturie Forest (1009 Harrison Avenue).

Currently, bike trails exist along Wisner and Robert E. Lee Boulevards, as well as the Harrison Avenue bike path that directly connects with this project. Additionally, a bike path for Marconi Avenue has been awarded funding from the Transportation Enhancements Program.  This project will greatly enhance the Park’s extensive bicycle trail system, facilitating greater community usage and opportunities for active transit. This project is slated to begin later this year.

WHAT THE’RE SAYING: “City Park has miles of beautiful bike roadways and trails. The new bike racks will allow bikers to explore the Park more fully,” said John Hopper, Chief Development Officer.

Click here to find out about bike rentals at City Park. 

What’s With the Marconi Bridge in City Park?

Irises painted on the railroad overpass on Marconi Drive have faded, but the railroad company has painted part of the bridge, mostly to warn trucks that are too tall to clear the structure.

This post originally was posted here.

________

Hey Blake,

The old train overpass on Marconi Drive used to have beautiful irises painted on it. Now they are faded and there's graffiti and big gray squares of paint. Who painted the original bridge and can they do it again?

Sara Schnell

Dear Sara,

  You're not alone in your curiosity about the Marconi Drive railroad bridge. In fact, we heard from reader Raymond Stelly a few days after you wrote, asking the same question. That's probably because the bridge is in such a high-profile spot, seen by thousands of people traveling through New Orleans City Park each day.

  The history of Marconi Drive itself dates back to March 1937. Like many park improvement projects of the time, the construction was a product of the federal Works Progress Administration. New Orleans Mayor Robert Maestri cut the ribbon on the new thoroughfare on April 13, 1938. It is named for Guglielmo Marconi, the Italian inventor widely known as the father of radio. The railroad underpass, which The Times-Picayune reported was built at a cost of $760,000, was dedicated in June 1953.

  The irises and pink and gray color scheme you recall date to the 1980s, when then-Orleans Parish Criminal Sheriff Charles Foti's prison art program repainted the underpass. The program began in 1984, when inmates helped paint Christmas murals on the old Orleans Parish Prison. Their work gave a fresh new look to dozens of structures over the years. Longtime Foti spokeswoman Danae Columbus could not recall the exact year the Marconi bridge was painted but said inmates initially repainted the entire bridge, then came back and added flowers.

  Recent activity you may have seen at the underpass has less to do with its look and more with safety. WWL-TV reported that after at least five instances of 18-wheelers crashing into the structure, city crews have installed warning signs and safety mechanisms to prevent future accidents. As for a new paint job, the underpass is owned and operated by the railroads, so any decision to repaint it would be up to them.

Throw Back Thursday #TBT

Carousel in 1906

Facts about the Carousel in New Orleans City Park:

The Carousel is often called the ‘Flying Horses’ by New Orleans locals.

The Carousel is the oldest ride in the Hines Carousel Gardens Amusement park. It dates back to 1906 but some of the animal figures date back to 1885.

The Carousel was originally located on a track of land along City Park Avenue. The Carousel was moved to its current location in 1928, creating what would eventually be City Park’s Amusement Park.


The Carousel has had a few owners in its history including Harry Batt, Sr. Locals may remember Mr. Batt from Pontchartrain Beach. In the late 1980s, William B. Hines loaned Friends of City Park $300,000 to purchase the Carousel from Harry Batt and an additional $50,000 to renovate the Carousel. (Eventually, Mr. Hines forgave all loans. The William B. Hines Carousel Gardens Amusement Park is named for him).


-The animals were carved and hand painted by Charles Looff and Charles Carmel.
-The Looff animal figures contain faux gem stones and are the older of the two types of animals (older than the Carmel animals).

-The animals are loved so much by visitors they need repainting every year to 2 years. They are still hand painted.


-The Carousel contains fifty-six animals. 53 are horses plus a lion, giraffe, and camel. There are also 2 chariots for riding.


-The horses have real horse hair tails.
-Thirty of the horses move up and down and are called ‘flyers’ (thus the Flying Horses nickname).
-The Carousel still uses the original motor.
-The circular platform on which the animals ‘ride’ is suspended off the ground by 40 metal rods.
-The lion weighs 500 lbs.

A Shade Story :: The New Orleans Botanical Garden

Travel around New Orleans City Park this summer and you’ll be looking for some shade to rest underneath. At the New Orleans Botanical Garden – they deliver shade!

The raised beds in the Southern Shade Garden is beauty in motion with shade loving plants such as Hydrangeas, Azaleas, numerous species of ferns and several shade loving groundcovers. Tree Ferns (Cyathea cooperii), with their spreading fronds, make striking architectural focal points along with several varieties of Japanese Maples (Acer japonica). Impatiens and Caladiums make a vibrant appearance during their annual growing season. Enjoy the delicate fragrance of Sweet Olive (Osmanthus fragrans) while swinging on one of our colorful swings under the Live Oaks.

The Garden is also filled with art. But today we’re looking for shade art. The next few photos show the Garden’s residents (the plants!) throwing some shade on the ground and looking good doing it.

New Orleans Botanical Garden hours of operation: Tuesday-Sunday: 10am - 4:30pm Closed Mondays
The Historic New Orleans Train Garden: Saturdays and Sundays from 10am to 4:30pm
The last entrance time is a 1/2 hour before closing. The entrance to the Garden is on Victory Drive in City Park. Ample free parking is available along Victory Ave. and in the lot across from the Garden.

A New Playground in City Park

Play, play, play………

The new Sir Cumference playground had a soft opening today at the Park. 
Like a fresh pizza coming out of the oven, it didn’t take long for kids to find it. 
You can’t see it in the picture above, but the playground also sports some
really fun musical instruments (think chimes and marimbas).

The playground is geared to children ages 5-12. It is located at the Festival Grounds.

Down the road we’ll have an official dedication of the playground.

DirectTV Volunteers Today in New Orleans City Park

We rely on volunteers like you to keep the park looking great.

City Park is a New Orleans treasure. For more than 150 years, the park has served as a natural sanctuary for New Orleanians – a place to escape from city life without ever leaving home. With more than 1,300 acres, it is also one of the largest urban parks in the U.S.

But a great urban park doesn't run itself. Our volunteers are essential to the day-to-day operation of City Park. When you volunteer your time as an individual or as part of a group, it is one of the most valuable contributions you can make to City Park, and you are building a better, stronger park for all of our visitors to enjoy.

On June 24, 2015, DIRECTV volunteered in City Park. They mulched trails in City Park's Couturie Forest. A tough job on any day, but super tough in this New Orleans summer heat! Thanks so much y'all!

Although these volunteers mulched a huge section of the forest, there is still some left to do - especially in the rear of the forest. That will be done soon! Interested in volunteering? We have countless ways for you to get involved and help us get growing!

Sign up to volunteer: Email esires@nocp.org or call Earl at (504)300-6394.

Katrina +10: A Park Remembers : Photo Boards at Big Lake

A true success story, the Park has not only rebuilt what was damaged in hurricane Katrina, but has built a better and stronger Park.

On Tuesday, June 23, 2015, the Park will host a media event unveiling 15 large photo boards at Big Lake, showing photos of Katrina damaged areas of the Park and those same areas of the Park as they are now: renewed. The photo boards will stay at Big Lake through September 2015. The first sign is located near the area of Big Lake where Lelong meets Wisner.
The Park’s website will also spotlight the Katrina section telling the rich City Park success story. The public can see this story on the homepage of the Park’s website: NewOrleansCityPark.com. 
The Park will also host a Thank You party for donors and volunteers later this summer.  Without generous donors and volunteers’ sweat equity, the Park would not look nearly as good as it presently does.
On the anniversary of Katrina, Saturday, August 29th , the Park will host a community day of service.
The Park lost 2,000 trees due to the hurricane and levee failures. Since 2005, City Park has planted more than 6,400 new trees. Ten trees were dedicated to mark the passing of ten years since hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans and the surrounding areas. New Orleans City Park kicked off their Katrina +10 events earlier on Thursday, May 7, 2015, with this tree dedication ceremony.
WHEN: Tuesday, June 23, 2015
TIME: The unveiling is at 9:30 am
WHERE: The signs are located on the Wisner side of the walking trail at Big Lake.
 

New Entrance and Bridge to Couturie Forest Dedicated

New Orleans City Park cut the ribbon on a 100-foot pedestrian bridge that was installed between the Volunteer Center and Couturie Forest creating a new entrance to the forest. Near the new bridge, a fence was installed and new gravel parking lot was established.

Couturie Forest is open to the public from 7 am to 8 pm (during daylight savings time). The public should make sure to remove their vehicles from the parking lot by closing time, as gates will be locked.

The bridge arrived on semi-trailers in two 50-foot sections.  It was off-loaded by a large crane and then bolted together to form one 100-foot long bridge.  The crane then hoisted the bridge over the lagoon and the ends were secured to the previously installed footings.

Couturie Forest is the perfect place to escape from the city without ever leaving town! Combined with Scout Island, the 60-acre site is a nature-lover’s haven filled with native trees, scenic waterways, and fascinating wildlife — all in the heart of the New Orleans. The forest is a great place to wander with your kids, family, and friends. An afternoon along the trails is more than just exciting – it’s an easy way to work in some exercise and learn a thing or two about the park’s rich, natural landscape.

The Couturie Forest Pedestrian Bridge was paid for by the Federal Highway Administration’s Recreational Trails Program through the Louisiana Office of State Parks.  Matching funds for this grant were provided by New Orleans City Park and Friends of City Park.  In all, this project totaled $270,627.00.  This pedestrian bridge will provide the new entrance to Couturie Forest.  Other upcoming improvements to the area include bike parking and a bike repair station and pump that will also be sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration’s Recreational Trails Program.  Additionally, the temporary gravel parking lot will be upgraded in coming years to a fully paved parking lot with 18 spaces, a water fountain, and an informational kiosk through the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development’s Transportation Alternatives Program.  These improvements will constitute the Harrison Avenue Trailhead, which will be a hub for alternative transportation routes throughout the Park.  This trailhead will connect Couturie Forest’s rugged trails with the Harrison Avenue bike lanes which connect to the bike lanes on Wisner Boulevard and the upcoming bicycle and multi-use path on Marconi that is a Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development’s Transportation Enhancement Project.

It’s Earth Day at City Park!

Earth Day at the New Orleans Botanical Garden promises to be a great event! The event will bring live music, educational lectures, and of course delicious food, to City Park.

This celebration promises:
-Guidance on living a sustainable way of life: 25 local businesses and non-profit organizations that contribute to a greener way of life will have booths and will welcome questions. Whether it is growing food, food preservation, solar energy, natural products, composting, or permaculture, Earth Day will have booths selling their wares or providing advice on living green in New Orleans.
-Green activities for kids
-Kids can use recycled materials to make an art project or kids can test their recycling knowledge with the “Sort the Trash” game. Kids can listen to Grant Estrade from Laughing Buddha who will teach about the importance of worms in the soil or complete a scavenger hunt around the Botanical Garden.
-Good eARTh Experience Art Show
- Enjoy the spring opening of the “Good eARTh Experience art show” in the Shade Garden featuring several local artists. To accompany the art, there will be live music by The Necessary Gentlemen.
-Art Demo: Linda Berman, a ceramic sculptor, will be giving a clay hand-building demo during the art show.
-Cooking demonstrations
Join Chef Edward Rhinehart from Seed restaurant for delicious, healthy cooking demos:
5 pm: Artichoke Cakes
6 pm: Artichoke Cakes
7 pm: Raw Tacos; a great raw dish that is very healthy with a whole lot of flavor
-Lectures
5 pm to 5:45 pm “Grow Dat Youth Farm: Growing Food, Nurturing Leaders” Speakers: Leo Gorman and Tre Spadoni
Learn about how young New Orleanians are becoming leaders through sustainable agriculture in City Park. Grow Dat will lecture on the experience as an organization, farm business, and how ecological farming contributes to a more just food system. 

6pm to 6:45pm “Water Wise Nola” Speaker: Jeff Supak, Water Wise Coordinator
Water Wise NOLA is comprised of Global Green USA, Dana Brown & Associates, Water Works, Hilairie Schackai, Neighborhood Partnership Network, and the Louisiana Urban Storm Water Coalition.  Their goal is to educate local residents about local water issues and how to address water as individuals.

All programs will have a Questions and Answer Session which will help classes count for CEU’s for teachers, landscape architects, architects, and LA Master Naturalists.
-Food, wine, beer, and mojitos available for purchase


Tuesday, April 21, 2015 from 4 pm to 8 pm

New Orleans Botanical Garden, 3 Victory Drive, New Orleans, LA 70124
Enter on Victory Drive or on Stadium Drive. There is free parking available on Park streets and in the parking lot across from the entrance to the Botanical Garden. We encourage you to ride your bike. We’ll have special bike parking on Victory Drive.

Free (donations are accepted)

Take a Morning Walk in the Park Sunlight and Better Your Metabolism

This is a reblog. The original article can be found by clicking here

Sunlight and weight loss:

Getting up for a sunrise walk can help you lose weight — but it isn't just the walking that makes the difference. Earlier this year, researchers at Northwestern University revealed that exposure to morning light can help as well.

Light exposure probably plays a role in regulating metabolism, much in the same way that the level of light exposure can cue wakefulness or sleepiness. Animal studies performed on mice have shown a similar correlation between light exposure and BMI, so the findings were not terribly surprising... Though the study confirms a correlation between early morning light exposure and body weight, researchers have not yet confirmed a causal connection. So there's not yet any reason to think that simply turning the lights on in the morning will trim the pounds.

Because our bodies are attuned to the sun — that is, after all, how we get our vitamin D as well as the melatonin that plays a role in our circadian wake-sleep cycles — there is probably a link between getting out into the early morning sunlight. More research is needed, but in the mean time, it couldn't hurt to get up for a sunrise jaunt. You may just get to witness beautiful scenes like this one.

Thanks Tulane University! We LOVE our volunteers!

New Orleans City Park is grateful to the staff of Tulane University for once again volunteering in the Park. This annual day of service with Tulane University staff will include 180 volunteers.
Volunteers will be removing invasive tree species on Scout Island and working to improve trails on Scout Island. Scout Island is the perfect place to escape from the city without ever leaving town. Combined with Couturie Forest, the 60-acres are a nature-lover’s haven filled with native trees, scenic waterways, and fascinating wildlife — all in the heart of the New Orleans.Volunteers will also be working on the Grow Dat Youth Farm clearing brush and doing general farm maintenance. The Mission of the Grow Dat Youth Farm is to nurture a diverse group of young leaders through the meaningful work of growing food. On the farm, staff and volunteers work collaboratively to produce healthy food for local residents and to inspire youth and adults to create personal, social, and environmental change in their own communities.
NOTE: Anyone is welcome to volunteer in City Park. If you are interested, please email Earl at Esires@nocp.org.

Spring time at City Park!

Join your City Park family for fun every day of the spring season! Use #iheartcitypark when you post about all the fun you’re having!

The Ladybug Roller Coaster is back in City Park! Visit Carousel Gardens to ride! We know you’ll love it!

Visit the Grow Dat Farm Stand each Saturday morning from 9am till noon.  While there you can take an Education Tour of the facility. Bring Home the Veggies and more! Check out the Farm Stand at Grow Dat Saturdays to purchase youth-grown produce in the City Park area’s only Saturday produce market. Get your weekly supply of fresh sustainably grown veggies, herbs, and cut flowers direct from the farm in City Park!
Specialties include salad mix, arugula, lettuce, kale, chard, and a variety of herbs. Produce is grown and sold by youth employees who are training as young leaders through the work of organic farming. Youth will be providing free tours of our fields, eco-campus and bayou corridor. All proceeds will go to further our mission to nurture a diverse group of young leaders through the meaningful work of growing food. Visitors can even take a tour while at the facility.
Park Address: 150 Zachary Taylor Dr. (between Pan Am Stadium and Dog Park).
For more information, email Sarah Howard at sarah@growdatyouthfarm.org, call 504.598.2743, or visit the website: www.growdatyouthfarm.org.


Plant Sales: The Pelican Greenhouse is located just off Henry Thomas (Golf) Drive just south of the I-610 underpass. Bring a wagon and arrive early for best selection. The Plant Sales are from 9am to noon and admission is free. For additional information call 504-483-9464 or e-mail plants@nocp.org for a list of plants that will be available for sale. Check the Park calendar for dates.

Big Bass Fishing Rodeo and Fishtival is fun for the whole family! Join us on March 28th and see if you can catch a big fish! The Park's Big Bass Fishing Rodeo will take place at Popp Bandstand and the fishing will be park-wide with some exceptions. The event includes the fishing rodeo, boats on the bayou, and a free fishtival! Please see BigBassFishingRodeo.com for more details. 

The Easter Egg Hunt is fun for kids 8 years old and younger. It’s on March 28th at 9am (but you should get in line earlier). At New Orleans City Park's Carousel Gardens! We hide more than 15,000 Easter eggs around the amusement park, including golden eggs with special prizes hidden inside. Kids can visit with the Easter Bunny and enjoy face painting and more entertainment. Gates open at 9am and the event begins at 10am (but you may want to get in line a head of time). For information please call (504) 483-9402. Price: only $4 per person – Under 12 months and Friends of City Park members get free admission. (Friends of City Park Members need to show their card. Not a member? Become one here!)


The annual Spring Garden Show in the New Orleans Botanical Garden invites visitors to explore horticultural exhibits and enjoy educational lectures, and family-friendly activities.
Join us on April 11-12 (9am to 5pm Saturday and 10am to 4pm Sunday)
-Plant and Garden Products, exhibits, and sales throughout the Garden
-Discovery Zone for kids
-Educational Programs
-Speakers
-Music and Arts & Crafts in the Azalea Garden
Admission is $8 for Adults and Admission for children 5 to 12 is $4 per person
Children under 5 and Friends of City Park enter free

The LPO’s Swing in the Oaks will take place on the Park's Goldring/Woldenberg Great Lawn on April 21st at 6pm. Music will begin at 6pm and run to 8:30pm. Arrive early for the best spots on the Lawn. This is a free event for the whole family! If you bring your dog, please remember the leash (it’s a law!).

Don’t miss Earth Day at City Park on April 21st. Walk over to the Botanical Garden from Swing in the Oaks and learn about living green, sustainability, recycling, composting ,and more.

Join the Bird Watching class in City Park on April 25th at 8am. Explore the Couturie Forest with Mark Meunier while enjoying a look at City Park’s avian inhabitants in the Couturie Forest. Mark will show you their habits and alert you to their calls. Appropriate walking attire and binoculars are needed. Meet at the Couturie Forest trailhead on Harrison Avenue in City Park. For more information or to register call 483-9473 or email scapley@nocp.org.


National Public Gardens Day: Public gardens are a fun activity for families, couples, and enthusiasts, providing a low-cost, entertaining, and beautiful community outing while providing important resources, education and research on environmental stewardship and conservation. National Public Gardens Day was created as a way to help educate the community about the important role Public Gardens play.
On May 8, 2015 we will be offering visitors time to enjoy the beauty of the Botanical Garden while learning about the New Orleans Botanical Garden's commitment to education.
With paid admission to the New Orleans Botanical Garden, tours will be given at no charge to the patron. Tours begin at 10:30am, 1pm, and 3pm. Please arrive at least 15 minutes before the tour begins. Each tour last one hour and 30 minutes depending on questions. Meet at the entrance of the Botanical Garden. Limit to 15 people in groups but all individuals are welcome. There is no need to register ahead of time.


Join us for a Flower Pressing Workshop on May 9th at 10:30am. Come join us for a Flower Pressing workshop given by Mary Ellen Miller. Mary Ellen will teach you about flower selection, how to dry flowers, and how to design with pressed flowers in any craft project.  There will be a craft project that participants will make and take home just in time for Mother’s Day! To register please call (504)483-9473 or email scapley@nocp.org.


It's the 10th anniversary of Cork in the Park! A special Wine Tasting Event To Support Historic City Park! Join us on May 15, 2015, at the Pavilion of the Two Sisters in the Botanical Garden in City Park. Join the party to taste outstanding wines and hot hors d'oeuvres, a silent auction, and a live Jazz Band.

Check out the Kid Friendly link on the City Park Calendar. Lots of activities listed there!

The New Orleans Botanical Garden has classes just for the kids this summer. 

City Putt and Carousel Gardens have misters and large fans to help you keep cool!

While in Carousel Gardens, check out the new Parker's Cafe. With TV's, AC, free Wifi and yummy food - it's a great place to take a break from the heat.

Rent a boat or bike and see the Park from a new perspective.

Grab some shade in Couturie Forest or the Shade Garden in The New Orleans Botanical Garden.

Spring days are great for fishing. Grab your LA Fishing License & gear and take on our 22 miles of shoreline.

Thursdays at Twilight Garden Concert Series at the Botanical Garden: This weekly series showcases a changing lineup of musicians and bands playing everything from ragtime to classical jazz. Check the Park’s calendar for talent names and dates.

 

We're OPEN!
Carousel Gardens Amusement Park:
Spring Season: 2/28/15 to 5/31/15
Saturday & Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Open on Memorial Day: 5/25 11am to 10pm
Admission: $4/person
Kids 36” & under get admission free
$18 unlimited rides or $4/ride
Paid admission to the Amusement Park also includes admission to the Botanical Garden and Storyland.

 

Storyland:
Tuesdays -Friday: 10am to 5pm and Saturdays & Sundays: 10am to 6pm
$4/person
Kids 36” tall and under receive free admission
Friends of City Park receive free admission

Paid admission to Storyland also includes admission to the Botanical Gardens and Amusement Park.

 

 

City Putt:
Sunday, Tuesday - Thursday: 10am to 10pm (last rental at 9pm)
Monday: only open for corporate/private events
Friday & Saturday: 10am to midnight (last rental at 11pm)
Ages 13+ $8
Children (4-12) $6
Second round in same visit $4
Children (0-3) Free

 

Botanical Garden:
Tuesday-Sunday: 10am - 4:30pm
Closed Mondays
The Historic New Orleans Train Garden: Saturdays and Sundays from 10am to 4:30pm
The last entrance time is a 1/2 hour before closing.
*$4/person
*Kids 36" and under receive free admission
*Friends of City Park receive free admission
Paid admission to BG also includes admission to the Storyland and Amusement Park.

 

Morning Call:
Open 24/7
You know you want hot beignets and Cafe au Lait!

Wordless Wednesday

This photo was taken by City Parker, Todd Norman. These tulips are at Big Lake - don't miss seeing them while they are in full bloom! 

Remember when they were planted in mid-January? Check out the before picture by clicking here.

Date Night at City Putt

What a success!

Date Night at City Putt on February 13 was so much for for everyone who attended! There were treats and roses and trinkets for everyone who came to Date Night. Plus we took cute photos of you and your date. See some of those photos by clicking on the link on this page.

Weren't able to make the event? Don't worry! We're going to host another Date Night at City Putt again soon.

Looking for more date night possibilities at City Park? Here are some great ideas!

New Orleans City Park is a romantic place no matter what season it is in New Orleans. The Park is a wonderful place to create memories!

PERFECT date-night ideas:
Celebration in the Oaks and a round of Mini Golf!

OR A round of Mini Golf and hot beignets from Morning Call.

OR Swing on a double sided swing at the Goldring Woldenberg Great Lawn while drinking Cafe au Lait. And these options are all within walking distance of each other!

There's also: walking hand-in-hand through shade from ancient oaks, the New Orleans Botanical Garden, gondola rides through Park lagoons, walks in the the five-acre Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden, plus so much more!

New Orleans Gondola: City Park's so romantic there have been over 315 proposals on the gondola alone and more people get married in City Park than anywhere else in New Orleans).

City Putt: Sunday, Tuesday - Thursday: 10am to 10pm (last rental at 9pm) Monday: only open for corporate/private events Friday & Saturday: 10am to midnight (last rental at 11pm)

Morning Call: open 24/7

New Orleans Botanical Garden: Tuesday-Sunday: 10am - 4:30pm

Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden

Join City Park: Spring Opening of Carousel Gardens Amusement Park, Opening of the New Ladybug Roller

So much happening this month!

Welcome the spring season to City Park with a trip to Carousel Gardens Amusement Park. Carousel Gardens Amusement Park is fun for all ages! The Amusement Park features 2 cafés and 17 rides guaranteed to put a smile on your face, including the Park’s namesake antique wooden carousel.

PLUS! The much awaited Ladybug Roller Coaster is back in City Park. The coaster was fabricated in Deggendorf, Germany. To ride the Ladybug Roller Coaster, there is a minimum height of 52" or 40" with a paid adult. The new roller coaster is larger and faster with a larger footprint than its predecessor. The Ladybug has 10 cars and each car has 2 seats. The old Ladybug Roller Coaster was closed due to structural corrosion caused by Hurricane Katrina and was dismantled in August of 2013. 
Contact the Park at (504) 483-9458 to book a Ladybug Roller Coaster themed corporate event or birthday party.

Parker’s Pizza opens in the Amusement Park selling pizza to everyone! The City Park mascot, Parker, prides himself on making the pizzas. (Don’t worry, Parker’s supervised by trained professionals.) Parker’s Pizza will impress your taste buds with traditional Italian ingredients. You’ll love the garlic buttered crust and zesty signature pizza sauce while craving the freshest mozzarella we use on each pizza. Parker’s Pizza offers pizza by the slice, a 16” large pizza, and an assortment of desserts. Parker’s Pizza also serves beverages, including beer and wine.

Season Passes to the Amusement Park are now available. Find out more info at this link.

While at the Amusement Park, connect with us on social media using the hashtag #iheartcitypark. 

OPENING DATE: Saturday, February 28, 2015 from 11am to 6pm

WHERE: Carousel Gardens Amusement Park, 7 Victory Ave, New Orleans, LA 70112

HOURS: Spring Season: February 28, 2015 to May 31, 2015
Saturday & Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Open on Memorial Day: 5/25 11am to 10pm

COST: Admission: $4/person
Kids 36” and under receive free admission
Friends of City Park members receive free admission
$18/unlimited ride band or $4/ride
Paid admission to the Amusement Park also includes admission to the Botanical Garden and Storyland.

What are your plans for 2015, City Park?

There is a lot going on at City Park and sometimes it’s hard to keep track of all the changes and improvements.

We have repaired most hurricane damage, but we are also building a better park in concert with the Park’s Master Plan – City Park 2018.
We’ve put the following list together to help you keep track of Park progress.

 

What have you done for me lately?
Since Hurricane Katrina in August of 2005, we have:

• Built the Goldring/Woldenberg Great Lawn
• Constructed the new Big Lake area
• Renovated Tad Gormley and Pan American Stadiums
• Renovated the practice track surface
• Renovated the North Golf Course
• Renovated the Casino Building
• Installed four miles of new sidewalks and jogging paths
• Completed Carousel renovations and installed two new rides in the Amusement Park
• Replanted the Botanical Garden and renovated all of its buildings
• Installed a new high tech playground
• Repaired all Storyland exhibits and added two new ones
• Planted over 6,000 trees
• Utilized 35,000 volunteers who have made dramatic improvements in the Park
• Demolished several hurricane-damaged buildings
• Repaved Harrison, Wisner, Robert E Lee and Marconi
• Landscaped the entrance to the Park
• Opened the new dog park – City Bark!
• Finished a 250-car parking lot at Tricentennial Place
• Built a new fishing pier along Marconi
• Opened the new City Park / Pepsi Tennis Complex
• Moved out of our trailers and into our new Administration Building
• Made additional road repairs and installed over 100 new LED street lights
• Constructed the Arbor Room at Popp Fountain – a new rental venue
• Dedicated the new 50-acre Festival Grounds
• Opened the Morning Call Restaurant
• Built City Putt, a 36-hole miniature golf complex
• Built a very large covered rink at Equest Farms
• Gave the century old Perisyle a facelift
• Dedicated the Matt Savoie Soccer Complex
• Built and opened Parker’s Café
• Purchased a food truck
• Built and opened Parker’s Pizza
• Installed ‘Icon’ at the Festival Grounds
• Built a new Little Red School House in Storyland
 

What are your plans for 2015?
We will either start or start & finish the following projects:
• Construct a new pedestrian bridge and parking lot at Couturie Forest
• Complete Amusement Park upgrades, including a new Ladybug Roller Coaster
• Major infrastructure improvements in and around Tricentennial Place
• Begin construction of a new championship level golf course and club house.
• Begin construction on a new entry to the Botanical Garden
• Start construction on the Enrique Alfèrez Sculpture Garden
• Build a new bike/jogging/ walking path between Robert E. Lee and Harrison Avenue
• Build a parking lot adjacent to the Arbor Room at Popp Fountain
• Relocate disc golf to north of I-610
• Install additional bike racks throughout the Park
• Install the Ladybug Roller Coaster
• Install ‘The Wave’ a new sculpture at Big Lake
• Will finish a 30-year restoration of the Carousel

 

What will I likely see in upcoming years?
• A new skate park
• A new maintenance building
• A new entry to the New Orleans Botanical Garden
• Construction of a new Environmental Education Center
• Construction of a Splash Park: City Splash

 

Want to learn more about the Master Plan: City Park 2018? Click here

Do you see the tulips? You will see them SOON!

Today, City Park staff, including Charlsie, Dillon, and Dan, planted 12,000 tulips on the bank of Big Lake.

Yep, you read that correctly - 12,000! 

We’ll all be thanking them in a couple of months when a stretch of the path (near NOLA, between the lake and Lelong) is in FULL bloom.  Soon you'll be able to walk the Zemurray Trail around Big Lake and it'll be like tiptoeing through the tulips!

Fair warning: after a walk, run or spin around this three-quart-mile trail ringing Big Lake, you may never go back to a drab gym. This scenic path is designed for walking, jogging or biking, and is one of the most beautiful places in New Orleans to burn off a few po-boys. 

As with all of our flower fields, please remember to take only photographs. Please don't pick the flowers or on trample them. 

There's even MORE to the Big Lake area! 

Not to be confused with that other “big lake” just outside of the city, City Park’s Big Lake has been one of the Park’s most popular recreational attractions. The lake is surrounded by 25 acres filled with art installations, wildlife and wetlands, paths for walking, jogging and biking, the New Orleans Museum of Art and much, much more!

Parking is available on Lelong Avenue and in a lot on the north side of Big Lake on Friedrichs Avenue.

The Singing Oak

City Park’s Singing Oak is one of the many unexpected delights visitors stumble upon when exploring the park. This large oak tree, which sits adjacent to Big Lake near the intersection of Wisner and Lelong in the John S. McIlhenny Meadow, is strung with a set of wind chimes that ring a pentatonic (five notes per octave) scale. This musical art installation was designed by artist Jim Hart, and is proof positive that there’s always music in the air in New Orleans! Fun fact: one of the chimes in the Singing Oak is 14-feet long.

Boat Rentals
See City Park from a new perspective! Spend a lazy afternoon floating with the ducks, swans and geese on the park’s historic bayous and lagoons. Click here for details. 

Bike Rentals
Explore City Park on two wheels!
City Park’s four miles of bike paths take riders from Bayou St. John to Lake Pontchartrain. Plus there are trails around Big Lake (3/4 of a mile) and the Festival Grounds (1 mile).
No bike? No problem. Bikes can be rented from the City Park Boat House on Big Lake. Take s troll with a friend on a tandum bike. Have fun on a surrey bike with a canopy. Click here for details.
Wheel Fun Rentals provides both our bikes and boats for rental.

Grateful Labors
This painted aluminum sculpture by New Orleans artist Wayne Amedee is dedicated to the countless individuals who helped rebuild the city following Hurricane Katrina. The red and green aluminum structure is located along the jogging path to the right of City Park’s main entrance.

New Orleans Museum of Art
The New Orleans Museum of Art celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2011 and is the city’s oldest fine arts institution. The museum sits just steps away from Big Lake and is home to a permanent collection of 40,000 objects ranging from French and American art to photography, glass and Japanese exhibits. Don't miss the the five-acre Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden holds more than 60 sculptures collectively valued at $25 million. It's located just to the left of the entrance to NOMA. Fun Fact: Just to the left of the sculpture garden is the famous Dueling Oak.

At every turn, you’ll find something to love around Big Lake: rare and native birds, including brown pelicans and the Park’s waddling gaggles of ducks and swans; the Pump House; the lake’s fountain, which shoots water 40 feet into the air; the Louisiana Trail dotted with trees representing our state’s seven distinct tree regions. The lake is divided by the Enrique Alferez bridge, and the tranquil, smaller section of the lake – a popular spot for picnickers and the park’s geese – flows into the Besthoff Sculpture Garden. Our advice? Take your time, explore all of the nooks and crannies around Big Lake, and come back for more as often as you like!

The Trust for Public Land, in partnership with City Park, developed this trail and meadow to commemorate the indomitable spirit of the residents of Greater New Orleans for their resilience and commitment to rebuilding their homes and neighborhoods after Hurricane Katrina. We believe parks and open spaces are essential elements that support vibrant, thriving communities, and we believe growing City Park is key to a healthy New Orleans.

New Orleans’ Only High Ropes Challenge Course Open to the Public for One Day

On Monday, January 19th, Friends of the Louisiana Outdoors Outreach Program (Friends of LOOP) will be hosting a community climbing day on “New Orleans’ only High Ropes Challenge Course.” 

Located in New Orleans City Park, the Challenge Course has helped school groups and community organizations increase team cohesion and safely strengthen participants’ confidence. In 2015, Friends of LOOP will be expanding its climbing schedule, and we encourage your group to check out the action.

The MLK Day Community Climb will begin at 10 am, and all participants 4 feet and over will have a chance to test themselves on elements including “The Cat Walk,” “Space Loops,” or everyone’s favorite, “The Pamper Pole.” With a donation of $20 per adult, a child 12 and under will also be admitted free.  All funds will support Friends of LOOP in their important mission of to “Provide positive, life-changing outdoor experiences for youth in Greater New Orleans.”

“Investing for Good”

This piece is reblogged. The original article can be viewed here.

In its first four years, Grow Dat Youth Farm has grown 25,000 pounds of organic produce. Now the urban agriculture nonprofit organization is planting seeds of a different kind and creating a recipe that gives other organizations the ingredients for success.

Using a $100,000 “Investing for Good” grant from Capital One Bank, Grow Dat is showing other organizations how to repeat its business model to address the shortage of fresh produce options. Grow Dat, which has graduated 100 youth leaders, is working to educate and inspire New Orleans youth with leadership and job opportunities.

“I think the program works because of our holistic response to a multitude of issues,” said Johanna Gilligan, director of the Grow Dat Youth Farm. “We are addressing a lot of problems — from environmental to lack of job opportunities for youth — with a single solution.”

Gilligan, who founded Grow Dat Youth Farm in collaboration with Tulane University and other organizations in 2011, says that Grow Dat’s first partner is the local nonprofit organization Bayou District Foundation. The action plan that they create will assist Bayou District in developing a similar program.

Funding from Capital One Bank, which operates more than 50 branches in greater New Orleans, will support the initial curriculum design as well as the launch of the new Bayou District program.

“Capital One Bank truly sees the value in our work and has invested in it,” Gilligan said. “We are creating a positive impact and taking it to the next level.”

Located on seven acres in New Orleans City Park, Grow Dat works with several high schools and youth organizations to recruit paid interns and teach them how to grow vegetables and fruit and prepare them for market.

Gilligan says Grow Dat’s commitment to create healthy communities through urban agriculture has piqued the interest from other nonprofit organizations throughout the country. They plan to make Bayou District the first of many partnerships. 

“Although there are other youth farms across the country, there is something that resonates about what we do here at Grow Dat,” said Gilligan.

______

For more information about Grow Dat Youth Garm, please click here. 

PERFECT date-night ideas!

New Orleans City Park is a romantic place no matter what season it is in New Orleans. The Park is a wonderful place to create memories! 

PERFECT date-night ideas:
Celebration in the Oaks and a round of Mini Golf!

OR A round of Mini Golf and hot beignets from Morning Call.

OR Swing on a double sided swing at the Goldring Woldenberg Great Lawn while drinking Cafe au Lait. And these options are all within walking distance of each other! 

There's also: walking hand-in-hand through shade from ancient oaks, the New Orleans Botanical Garden, gondola rides through Park lagoons, walks in the the five-acre Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden, plus so much more!

A few light-hearted highlights from the CPIA Board Minutes from 1891-1899

As some of you may know, our City Park Imrpovement Association Board minutes go back to 1891. Historically, they have been written in great detail. We are –slowly- going through the minutes in order to post highlights on our website timeline. With the help of four Tulane students we will soon be adding four more decades to the website timeline.

Below please find a few light-hearted highlights from 1891-1899:

*No one knows what to do with the two cases of wine won during the summer at the French Society Entertainment, as the tickets were purchased by the entire board.
*It’s decided to purchase a mower, hire a man to mow, build flower beds and buy a cart “for the purpose of moving mud and filling up low places.”
*The driving gate is repaired for the sum of $45, “on account of the damage done to said gate by Dr. Stumph in June” – who said he would pay for the repair but refused when he saw the bill.
*There is a problem with Mr. LaFrance’s cows coming into the Park off his pasture, and the board wants him to put up a fence, which he won’t do.
*A shipment of goldfish is received by the Park – no one knows what to do with them.
*Bought a pair of deer.
*Deer in the Park killed by hunting dogs
*March 17th - Lake overcrowded with fish, so the committee decides to allow fishing on Sundays for 50 cents per person.
*April 21st – Fishing in the lake no longer allowed, as the fish were being depleted too quickly.
*A “freak half-duck half-chicken” is donated to the Park. The park accepts the gift with thanks.
*No arrests in the Park this year “which goes to show that the Park is frequented by good and respectable people.”
*The offer of a bear to the Park is declined, as a man was killed in the Park by a bear a few years ago.

Although the above references are light-hearted the board minutes when viewed as a whole are absolutely fascinating and enlightening. 

Start a Family Tradition Today at Celebration in the Oaks

One of my favorite family traditions to do each year with my twin daughters is the have their pictures taken with Santa at Celebration in the Oaks. Each year Romaguera Photography Studio offers pictures with Santa in the Gazebo behind the Carousel. Romaguera Photography Studio does a beautiful job changing the set each year to make each photo unique. Santa is available every day through December 23 and Mrs. Claus joins him on Friday and Saturday nights. Romaguera Photography Studio offers packages of print photos as well as an opportunity to purchase the digital file of your photo. I love being able to buy the digital file and use the photo in many different ways. I have always received the file to my e-mail the same night. My girls love going to see the lights at Celebration in the Oaks and love their annual visit with Santa!

Start your own family tradition today!

Click here for a money saving coupon! 

-This piece was written by Geneva Longlois-Marney, Major Gifts Officer for New Orleans City Park. Geneva can be reached at gmarney@nocp.org.

President’s Awards: given to deserving members of the New Orleans City Park family

Each year, as the year and tenure of the current CPIA Board Presidential term ends, the President's Awards are given out to deserving members of the New Orleans City Park family.
This year’s deserving winners are:

 

City Park Gives Back!

Pictured: Staff from ILSP and Stephanie Burkhardt, CP Dir. of Human Resources

The holidays are a good time to reflect and be grateful. The Park and its employees have much to be grateful for - the last year's been a wonderful one for the Park!

Here are just a few examples of positivity in 2014: With help from the New Orleans Botanical Garden, our first Earth Day in City Park was a big hit! City Park opened Parker's Cafe and Parker's Pizza; both in Carousel Gardens Amusement Park. Our wildflower fields brought joy to many people (and they'll be back in the spring y'all!). We celebrated the 50th anniversary of The Beatles playing in City Park. Just before its May one year anniversary, City Putt celebrated the 100,00th round of mini golf played at the facility. With help from Friends of City Park, the Carousel's restoration was started. We've planted over 6000 new trees since August of 2005. We entered into the 2nd year of Celebration in the Oaks using 99.9% LED lights.

Along with so much positive movement forward, City Park employees decided to give back to the community this year. We were able to give clothes and toys to 30 children from 13 families from the Independent Living Skills Program (ILSP) in New Orleans.

ILSP provides emancipation services to foster youths, ages 16-18, for release from foster care, with the objective of preparing them for responsible adulthood. An array of workshops and classes are offered to ensure that the youths are meeting their individual goals. Activities for youths, ages 14-15, are focused on developing social skills while youths, ages 16-17, learn independent living skills. 

The City Park Carousel chariots returned to the Park

The City Park Carousel chariots returned to the Park Friday, December 5, 2014,  after being fully refurbished for the first time in 30 years. Instead of painting them a solid color, the craftsmen from WRF Designs led by Bill Finkenstein, painted them multiple colors in order to bring out the detail in the carving. The craftsmen also painted flowers on the back of the chariot. They are truly a site to see. Visit them at Celebration in the Oaks through January 3rd then again after February 28th when Carousel Gardens opens for the Spring. 

A New 100-foot Pedestrian Bridge in City Park

On Thursday, July 31, 2014, a 100-foot pedestrian bridge was installed between the Volunteer Center and Couturie Forest at 1009 Harrison Avenue.

The bridge arrived on semitrailers in two 50-foot sections.  It was off-loaded by a large crane and then bolted together to form one 100-foot long bridge.  The crane then hoisted the bridge over the lagoon and the ends were secured to the previously installed footings.  (Guys and machinery are involved so there were multiple opportunities for delays!)

Near the birdge, a fence was installed and new gravel parking lot was placed in the area. 

Funding for the project was provided by the Louisiana Recreational Trails Program, City Park, and Friends of City Park.

Celebration in the Oaks: open nightly!

The Bayou Metairie Monster

This is a reposted blog piece. The original piece from nola.com can be viewed by clicking here

By Melinda Shelton, Mid-City & More columnist
(on nola.com on December 04, 2014 at 2:57 PM, updated December 04, 2014 at 2:58 PM)


On a balmy, winter evening in New Orleans, my canine sidekick Liza Jane met me at the front door, leash dangling from her mouth, brown eyes bright with excitement. I recognized the "you're taking me for a walk, human" behavior.

"It's dark, Liza Jane," I told her. Her perky ears drooped a tad. "Ok, I'll just take you on a quick spin around the block. But that's it. You know we've been binge-watching 'Criminal Minds' so let's stay close."

Liza Jane dogged my every step to keep me on track. After I triple-locked the front doors, I turned in time to see Liza walk to my car and drop her leash. She shot me a killer canine look. I parked near Morning Call and barely had time to lift the car's rear hatch as she leapt out, triumphant. With my phone on silent and tucked it in a pocket beside my Mace, we started our walk around the lagoons in City Park.

It was eerily darker than usual. I realized park officials had turned off all of the lights, as in light poles and Christmas decorations, I suppose to build suspense for Celebration in the Oaks that was opening its nightly run Dec. 5. The lone illuminated display was the green serpent in the lagoon.

A musician shrouded in the darkness under live oaks played a mournful saxophone tune, which floated across the smooth-as-glass water. A talkative group of runners emerged from the shadows and disappeared again, reminding me of the flocks of birds I hear before I can spot them in a darkening twilight sky. A couple with a toddler ambled by, and the woman yelped when she finally looked up from her texting. "Sorry," she murmured.

I wanted to tell her and her male companion to turn off their danged phones for just five minutes, watch the kid more closely, and feel and hear and smell the park. Southern manners prevailed.

We made an abbreviated circuit of the lagoons and stopped at Morning Call.          That's where we met Erin Osbrach, an energetic worker at the 24-hour coffee shop. Before I could settle into a wrought iron chair on the patio, she had a glass of water on the table and said she'd be right back with my to-go order of beignets and small hot chocolate. She was back in a flash: "The beignets were just made and are hot," she said.

I was scribbling notes in a memo book, looked up and smiled. In the same time it took her to get my to-go order, I learned she's a college student, has been working at Morning Call for awhile and loves meeting the people, especially international tourists, and it's a really great place to work.

I introduced her to Liza Jane, who peeked out from beneath my chair, and she laughed when I said the dog loves beignets.

"You look familiar. Are you a writer?" she asked.  I nodded. Her exuberant energy was palpable. "I thought I recognized you from your photo. You write a column and you write about your dog sometimes, right?" Liza Jane emerged and nuzzled up to the human who recognized her celebrity status.

After a brief visit, I walked Liza Jane to the Great Lawn. As I sat on a bench and sipped creamy hot chocolate, Liza settled at my feet, and we shared beignets. I laid the brown paper bag on the ground and laughed as she stuck her head farther into it to get to the powdered sugar at the bottom. She emerged, muzzle caked with white sugar, sneezed, and smiled—really.

A nearly full moon emerged from clouds, and life unfolded, uneventfully, around us.

During 2015, I hope we all will take more time to disconnect from our devices and reconnect with family, friends, felines, canines—and delightful people like Erin.

The Making of a Man: Stanley W. Ray, Jr.

This blog post was written by Kim Bernadas, the sculptor who created a piece currently in City Putt.


The Making of a Man
When I was first approached by Conrad Meyer IV, representing the Stanley Ray Trust about creating the life size Bronze sculpture of Stanley W. Ray, I wondered what I was getting into. Although excited at the opportunity to create a life size bronze of Stanley Ray, my task as a sculptor would be challenging.  Despite his well known name and reputation as a benefactor and a fine gentleman, his physical image was one of a mystery. With only a couple of photos and a worn newspaper clipping, I was asked to create the 6’4” presence of Stanley Ray for the City Putt mini golf complex, located in New Orleans City Park.
I asked myself, “Who was this man?”
As with every new portrait sculpture, I am driven by the desire to represent the subject true to life, both inside and out. What makes the sculpture come to life lies in the ability to capture the essence of the individual both physically and soulfully.  I wanted to bring Stanley Ray to life.
As I began to dig into the history of Stanley Ray, one thing was very evident… Stanley Ray was a giver. Even as small boy, he was placing the needs of others ahead of himself. After his parents died unexpectedly, Stanley, only a teenager, took charge of his siblings and remained their faithful mentor. His destiny seemed to be in the making.  Throughout his life, Stanley reached out to the community in whatever way he could, to bring joy and assistance to the young children in need. His efforts can be seen in City Park, Audubon Park, playgrounds and meditation walks around the city, and now the beautiful family golf course, City Putt.
It was my mission, as a sculptor, to express his energy for life and his warm and giving nature in the sculptural form. Speaking to those who knew Stanley, they reminisced about how he looked, his demeanor. And finally, after reading about his accomplishments , I was then able  create his image as it stands today, welcoming all those who enter City Putt, his warm smile offering the promise of a fun time for children of all ages.  The legacy of Stanley Ray lives on as an example for all, in that the greatest reward lies in the joy we can bring to others.
Stanley W. Ray, Jr, was born in New Orleans in 1915, graduated from Jesuit High School and attended Tulane University. He also served in the United States Army Air Corps during World War II. Mr. Ray died in 1970.
You are welcome to visit the sculpture of Stanley W. Ray, Jr. at the front of City Putt’s New Orleans Course. The course is sponsored by The Stanley W. Ray, Jr. Philanthropic and Civic Trust.

-Kim Bernadas, Sculptor
www.kimbernadas.com

Bob Becker’s Lifetime Achievement Award

Bob Becker, CEO

Today New Orleans City Park’s CEO, Bob Becker, received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Bureau of Governmental Research. The Excellence in Government Awards took place at the The Westin Canal Place.

Established in 1994, the BGR recognizes government employees for outstanding performance and creative problem-solving. Winners have a minimum of 15 years in service and are dedicated public employees who deserve great recognition for their accomplishments. 

Bob took the helm of City Park in 2001, at a time when the Park was facing difficult financial circumstances.

In early 2005, Bob led the team to create the Park’s Master Plan for the future: City Park 2018.

He was at the helm in August of 2005, when hurricane Katrina and the failure of the federal levees, in his words, ‘annihilated the Park.’ He led the team to push through the devastation and to keep pushing the Master Plan forward. Bob made a vow saying, “We’re going to make it better than it was before. We’re going to build a world class Park.” The Master Plan called for money to be raised and improvements to be made. A target date of 2018 tied the plan to the city of New Orleans’ 300th birthday.

Bob is still at the Park’s helm pushing forward. At the employee lunch marking the 5th Anniversary of Katrina Bob said, “People like to get behind winners. City Park is a winner.” We should all strive to be winners like Bob Becker. New Orleans City Park is proud to call Bob our leader. Congratulations Bob Becker!

Please click here to learn more about the Park's Master Plan.

Who is the Bureau of Governmental Research?
Good government requires constant vigilance on the part of the governed. That’s where BGR can help. They are an independent, non-profit, non-partisan organization that is dedicated to gathering information on government and other public issues. Their research professionals analyze government policies, finance, management, and administration, and present the facts to the public. They shed light on complex issues and facilitate productive debate, thereby encouraging excellence in the various governments operating in the Greater New Orleans Metropolitan Area. They arm you with the information you need to make decisions about the future and well-being of our region.

City Park’s Art Scene Blooms with New Sculpture

It was a warm and sunny autumn morning on October 16, 2014, and City Park’s art scene was about to bloom.

As part of the Prospect 3 project in New Orleans, City Park is delighted to have Will Ryman’s sculpture in the Park.

Ryman’s sculpture is called Icon and is an elegant red sculpture with large roses reaching for the sky. You’ll also notice large thorns as with any rose plant.

Ryman build the piece in 2011. It’s painted stainless steel and fiberglass. It reaches 30 feet into the air. The piece is courtesy of the artist and the Paul Kasmin Gallery in New York.
The piece was drive down to New Orleans from New York in multiple pieces and it took a full day to put the pieces together.

You can visit the sculpture at the foot of Palm Drive where it meets Golf Drive (but with it being 30 feet tall, chances are you’ll see it before you get there!)

Bonus! Even though Prospect 3 will end in January of 2015, Icon will remain in City Park till at least January of 2017.

Click here to check out NOLA.com's article on Icon

A Texture Story

From the 1930s to today, we're proud to offer the city of New Orleans carefully cultivated gardens. Open year round, twelve acres of gardens and art await you. Whether you are a local or a tourist, make sure to take a leisurely stroll through our many gardens. We know you'll see something new each visit and always leave with a smile. 

The New Orleans Botanical Garden is filled with thousands of plants. This is a story of texture. 

[20 photos below]

Please click here to learn more about the Botanical Garden. Please click here to learn about What's In Bloom this month. 

Biking to Work: I’m Able to Easily Stop to Take Photos

Andrea made this photo in City Park on 10/08/14

It wasn’t until I was asked to write this blog post, around the photo I took on a recent walk to work, that I did some research and found that 30% of Americans live within 5 miles of their work.  It’s a surprising statistic when one takes into consideration that only 3.5% of Americans actually walk or bike to work. I’m one of the lucky ones that falls into both categories.

A little over a year ago I started working for the Human Resources department at City Park.  Part of the draw when I accepted the position was both the Park’s proximity to my apartment as well as the walk’s aesthetic quality. For environmental and financial reasons, I’ve decided to live without a car in New Orleans, and it’s not as difficult as one might imagine. Compared to my native Dallas suburb, it’s a piece of cake, actually I often say that I’d bet good money that I have the most beautiful commute of anyone I know. The low fog on City Park’s open lawns at sunrise - rather common this time of year- is one of the most glorious sights, and I’ve become an inadvertent birder as I casually make note of the differing varieties of waterfowl hanging out on our Little Lake.

Xavier University and City Park

Kenneth St. Charles, Vice President for Institutional Advancement, Xavier University

You might well ask, why is a fundraiser for City Park writing about Xavier University? 

Let me back up a bit.  I have lived in New Orleans off and on since 1980.  During that time I have driven by Xavier University hundreds of times.  The number of occasions I actually went to an event or even just drove through campus, however, I could count on both hands. 

I watched the chapel go up at Xavier in recent years and wanted to see it.  Recently, I called my friend Kenneth St. Charles who serves as the Vice President for Institutional Advancement at Xavier.  I asked if he would give me a tour and he delivered.  He met me with a golf cart and we spent the next two hours visiting many of the buildings on campus. 

Let me tell you, there are a lot of wonderful things going on under the green roofs of Xavier. 

Designed by renowned architect Cesar Pelli, the chapel is a sublime and restful oasis amidst the bustle of student activity. No matter your religious affiliation, you will be pleased if you take the time to visit the chapel in the near future.

Aside from the buildings and the impressive scholastic achievements of the students, what really impressed me was the cordial and friendly atmosphere that permeates the campus.  Everyone greeted everyone no matter their rank or role.  Kenneth barely had time to put our golf cart in gear before he needed to stop and answer a question or give directions to new students.

Ok, ok, this is supposed to be a blog about City Park, maybe even fundraising.  My Xavier visit reminded me that the development of a great city is not a linear process.  It’s not a question of going down a punch list and fixing or improving one thing at a time (e.g., public safety, education, healthy living, and potholes).  Rather, all those elements need to be progressing in tandem.

Likewise, great parks don’t happen in a vacuum.  Truly great parks reflect the fact that a city has progressive businesses and great universities like Xavier along with a host of other factors.  Add Tulane, Dillard, UNO and Loyola to the mix and New Orleans finds itself blessed with an annual influx of caring and educated citizens.  Aside from good jobs, they also want a good quality of life and that’s where City Park comes into the picture.

City Park has been going through a distinctive renaissance in the past several years.  I invite you to come and use your Park and to also support it financially.  One of our taglines is “Every Great City Deserves a Great Park.”  We work every day to deliver just that.

Written by:

John Hopper

Chief Development Officer & Director of Public Affairs for New Orleans City Park

(504) 259-1509 / jhopper@nocp.org

Keep doing what you’re doing City Park squirrels!

Photo credit to mnn.com

The original article can be found here

 

An Imperfect Memory Saves Forests
Rob Swihart, a wildlife ecologist at Purdue University, researched the habits of grey squirrels as they collect nuts and store them for winter food. Because grey squirrels compete with many other animals for the same food source, they tend to bury nuts in many, many secret stashes all over their forest habitat. They can't always get back to spots where they've buried their nuts, either because they forgot where they are or perhaps they've become a meal for another forest animal. That forgotten stash often ends up sprouting into new nut-bearing trees which benefit many animals in the ecosystem.

This is more beneficial to deciduous forests than the habits of red squirrels, which stash their winter food all in one pile. The habit works fine when red squirrels are foraging in evergreen forests and collecting pine cones, the seeds of which can survive fine in these large piles. But when red squirrels are foraging in deciduous forests and storing nuts in these same large piles, the nuts tend to dry out and die. They can't sprout into new trees, which means fewer nut-bearing trees and less diverse and healthy forests.

Even though the fallibility of grey squirrels' memories is beneficial to forests, the fact that they remember as much as they do is astounding. According to research published in Princeton University's journal "Animal Behavior," grey squirrels can remember not only where they buried their caches but also how much is in them. A study showed that squirrels will return first to the caches with the larger amounts of food.

 

 

This article of course made me think about our own Couturie Forest and the animals who call it home. Couturie Forest is the perfect place to escape from the city without ever leaving New Orleans. Combined with Scout Island, the 60-acre Couturie Forest is a nature-lover’s haven filled with native trees, scenic waterways, and fascinating wildlife — all in the heart of the New Orleans. 

If you're in City Park's forest, expect to see countless varieties of trees, fish, and birds along the trails and in the waterways. And of course, squirrels too. The City Park staff and volunteers spend many hours taking care of the forest, weeding, mulching, ripping out invasive species, and more. We plant many trees and appreciate when trees sprout from forgotten nuts from squirrels.

Keep doing what you're doing City Park squirrels! 

It’s raining in City Park - and the trees LOVE it!

It’s raining in New Orleans City Park. Which typically means less people are out in the Park enjoying themselves.

But there’s a silver lining to every dark cloud.

The rain is loved by the trees that call the Park home. Directly after a rainstorm, not only do the trees look lush and full with bright green color but the fern, which lives on the trees, transforms.

Resurrection Fern (Polypodium polypodioides Watt) is found growing on the trucks and branches of many of the Oaks in City Park. It gets its name ‘resurrection’ from the way the fern acts during weather patterns at the Park. If you visit the Park during a period with no rain, the fern will be brown and shriveled. It will appear to be dead.

But it's not dead!

Following a rain, that same fern will be green and lush climbing the Oaks’ mighty limbs. It is Louisiana’s only epiphytic fern. We think it certainly adds a special grace to the Oaks in the Park.

Have you noticed this transformation in the Park? We hope you will now. 

Learn more about the Live Oaks of City Park here.

Grow Dat Youth Farm in City Park

Grow Dat Youth Farm’s offices are made out of recycled shipping containers. (Photo: Lauren LaBorde)

{This article is reblogged from this GoNOLA link. Please click the link to read the entire story.}

It seems that New Orleans is poised to become a city where local, sustainable food is ubiquitous, especially considering that the next generation of residents is becoming immersed in the world of urban agriculture. Grow Dat Youth Farm [in New Orleans City Park] is one place where this is happening.

Today’s GoNOLA Find is not only doing great things by providing safe and educational after-school job opportunities to New Orleans high school students, the Grow Dat campus itself is a striking find to stumble upon while exploring City Park. The vision of the Tulane City Center at the Tulane School of Architecture, the bright-green building is made out out recycled shipping containers, a big architectural trend at the moment. Inside, the structure includes offices, a kitchen for cooking classes, handling areas for produce — and composting toilets!

Youth in the farm’s leadership program receive a hands-on education in the process of food production, from farm to table. The students are involved in growing, cooking, eating and selling the food.

Ride your bike along the path in City Park (I like to start by the Big Lake in front of the New Orleans Museum of Art and take a cool spin around the water) and then continue down the path to find the farm by the intersection of Zachary Taylor Drive and Golf Drive. The farm sells its produce at local farmers markets and on the City Park campus, and you can often find Grow Dat’s goods in menu items at New Orleans restaurants. The farm also offers “learning tours” for adults interested in the operation. Check [Grow Dat's] website for details.

Click here to see a great video about Grow Dat Youth Farm. 

Get Queen Elsa to invite your kids to the CITO Family Party!

Join us at the Family Party!
Queen Elsa wants you and your family at the party!

Elsa. Ana, and Olaf will be waiting at the Family Party for you!
 

Queen Elsa wants you and your kids at the Celebration in the Oaks Family Party!
And she wants to call your kids on the phone to invite them!
Between November 3rd and 7th, you may come to the Reception Desk in the Administration Building (1 Palm Drive) from 9am to 4pm to buy Celebration in the Oaks Family Party tickets. At the same time, you may sign up for a phone call from Queen Elsa, of Disney’s Frozen, where she will personally invite your kid(s) to the Celebration in the Oaks Family Party.

Frozen characters Elsa, Ana, and Olaf will be at the Family Party on November 23 ready to take photos and sign autographs.

Phone calls will occur on the date and time you sign-up for: between 4pm and 6pm on November 17th through November 20th.

-There will be a limited amount of spots open each day.
- You’ll sign up for a day, time, and give your phone number and kid(s) names.
-Parents must come to the office to buy their tickets and sign up (no emails or phone calls).
-If there are multiple children in one family, you’ll need to place the call on speaker phone. Only one call per household.

The whole of the Family Party won't just be about Frozen! 

Kids get the royal holiday treatment at their own Celebration in the Oaks Preview Party and – bonus! – mom and dad can enjoy this family experience without lifting a finger. Your little ones will feel like the kings and queens of the ball at this fun-filled party.

Please note: we know it can be a nightmare stuffing them into dress-up clothes, so give yourself and the kids a break. This is one holiday party where casual attire is recommended.

Admission includes:
* Unlimited rides at the amusement park, including the miniature train and carousel. (Pssst! Don’t tell the kids, but we have great new surprises all along the train route this year to delight the whole family.)
* Unlimited kid-friendly eats for the whole family, including pizza, hot dogs, hamburgers, mac & cheese, chicken fingers, fruit, soft drinks and more.
* Fun live entertainment, including balloon clowns, an airbrush tattoo artist, stilt walkers, a DJ and more.


Date: November 23, 2014

Time: Early Admission: 5pm - (6pm) 8:30pm

Tickets: $40/person in advance

OR

Time: General Admission: 6pm - 8:30pm

Tickets: $30/person in advance
Friends of City Park members: $25/person in advance
Children under 2 get in free!

There is a limited amount of tickets so buy yours early! Tickets on sale NOW at this link.

Tonight’s Supermoon

Photo by Todd N.

Skywatchers, you're in for a treat.

Tonight's Supermoon is a pretty special one.

When the moon turns full tonight at 8:38pm (New Orleans time), it not only will become the last Supermoon of the summer, but also this year's Harvest Moon -- which is a full moon that occurs closest to the autumnal equinox.

We look forward to seeing photos of the Supermoon over the Park. Please send them to AFrentz@nocp.org to have them included in our archives. 

Check out Supermoon photos from around the globe here (Huffington Post Science). 

Spend Labor Day in YOUR backyard at New Orleans City Park!

City Putt, Storyland, and Carousel Gardens Amusement Park will be open 10am to 5pm on Labor Day September 1, 2014.

It's going to be a GREAT day! 


Carousel Gardens Amusement Park:
We’re having a Princess and Super Hero party in Carousel Gardens and you’re invited! Kids wear your costume to get free admission into the Amusement Park (Adult admission is $4, $3/ride or get an Unlimited Ride Band for $17).
Have some family fun, ride the rides, visit and take photos with Cinderella, Rapunzel, Spiderman, and Batman!
Arrive early as the line to take photos with the characters may be cut off early in order to conclude by closing time.
Experience the yummy treats at the NEW Parker’s Café! It’s air conditioned AND has free WiFi!
For this day’s event kids in costume get in free. Parents and kids not in a costume can buy tickets at the gate or click here to purchase ahead of time. Ride tickets and unlimited ride bands need to be purchased at the Ticket Booth.

Work up a sweat in City Park!

There’s no prettier place in New Orleans to get fit than City Park. With a gorgeous landscape designed for walkers, runners and bikers, your workout doesn’t feel like work at all when you hit the scenic paths around the park. 

Be sure to check out the two Fitness Zones in the Park:

The first is near the corner of Golf Drive and Freidricks Avenue located on the Festival Grounds. Parts are covered to allow use during an in-character Summer shower or any sunny day in New Orleans.

The second is on Stadium Drive and was provided by the Friends of City Park. Each are guaranteed to provide the best setting among the City Park trees.

Also there are trails for runners and walkers alike. The Zemurray Trail around Big Lake, the Festival Grounds, Couturie Forest, Roosevelt Mall plus the Park streets are perfect for you if your interest is a quick walk or putting in some real sweat equity for yourself. 

Boat & bike rentals at the Boat House on Big Lake. There are many types of both boats and bikes to rent, including a 4 seat surrey bike. 

The Park's Old Grove is also a great place for a run or walk. The Old Grove is home to many of the Park's oldest oak trees. 

As always, wear sunscreen and stay hydrated.

And with all this excercise, you'll really deserve beignets! At Morning Call, in the Park's Casino Building, the sugary donuts are made 24/7.

See you out there! 

City Park did quite well in the Gambit’s Best of New Orleans 2014 awards!

City Park did quite well in the Gambit's Best of New Orleans 2014 awards!

We won first place in a couple catagories, placed in the top three in others, and had a hand in other's win, too.
And that all has to do with YOU! Thanks! We know you love the Park and we hope you know the Park really does love you back!

The Gambit  has attempted to answer questions about it’s Best of New Orleans competition. From ‘How do you pick the categories?’ to ‘What’s the biggest change this year?” you can click here to learn more about their methodology. 
You can see all the winners here.

Fond Memories of City Park

Morano Sisters at the Peristyle, 1912

We like to think everyone who has spent time in New Orleans City Park has fond memories. Recently NOLA.com asked for the public’s memories to be submitted to their website.

Here are seven of their favorites (edited):
‪Lisa Fuxan Mizell:
"Momma and daddy met on [the Langles] bridge on September 4, 1943. Momma passed away peacefully on September 4, 2012. Their relationship was 69 years to the day. They had a beautiful marriage."

#IceBucketChallenge Accepted IN Popp Fountain!

On August 21, 2014 Bob Becker, New Orleans City Park CEO, was challenged by Ron Forman, President and CEO of Audubon Zoo, to complete the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge! He had 24 hours to complete the challenge and it was quite a show!

Bob and some of his staff decided to take the challenge head-on! As to not waste water, Bob decided to use City Park's Popp Fountain for the challenge and it doing so the ice bath was e-p-i-c! Click here to view the video and see photos below. 

Bob has challenged:

Susan Taylor, Director New Orleans Museum of Art

Victor Richard, Chief Executive Officer New Orleans Recreation Development Commission

Jay Cicero, President and Chief Executive Officer Greater New Orleans Sports Foundation

To donate to Team Gleason to fund research to find a cure for ALS, please click here. To learn more about what ALS is please click here

A Challenge Accepted! #ALSIceBucketChallenge

New Orleans City Park is familiar with duels. Our old trees have seen many duels back in the day when they were called “affaires d’honneur”. The Park was easily accessible, yet remote enough to insure privacy as Creole gentlemen defended their honor. 

Speaking of challenges...

Bob Becker, CEO of City Park, has been challenged by Ron Forman, Audubon Zoo's President and CEO, to complete the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge! 

Watch the challenge be made here

Check back here tomorrow to see what happens!

Read more here about the Dueling Oak and other oak trees in City Park. 

Turtle Wisdom

Having a slow start to your Friday? This guy knows what you mean! 

Earl Sires, the Park's Volunteer Manager, took this photo on the morning of August 15, 2014. 

Speaking of volunteering, there's a Super Saturday Volunteer Day coming up soon. Although you can volunteer for the Park everyday, a Super Saturday is special in that the work you do is probably part of a larger project and you work with a group of volunteers. 

Volunteers are invited to the Volunteer Center at 1009 Harrison Avenue on the first Saturday of every month, with occasional exceptions. Work assignments include maintaining areas around City Park. 

The next few Super Saturdays are: September 6, October 4, November 8, December 6. (Stay tunned to hear the 2015 dates!)

How to sign up to volunteer: Email esires@nocp.org or call (504)300-6394.

Your friends Cacti and Succulents

Cacti and Succulents at the Botanical Garden

The cactus family has nearly 2000 species and with only one exception, they are native to America. They range from the Arctic Circle to the mountains of Chile, but are most abundant in the southwestern United States and Mexico. 

Kidcam at City Park

This is the last week of Kidcam camp at City Park. City Park does not run its own camp but instead rents out space in the Amusement Park to a company that runs camps all over the south. That company is Kidcam. Founded in 1974, Kidcam’s mission is to promote children’s physical, social, and educational well-being with a safe, fun-filled camp environment that they will want to return to every summer.

My two girls have spent the majority of their summer at Kidcam. They have spent a couple weeks at another camp and grandparents camp but the majority of the time here in the Park. For me, as I am City Park’s Major Gifts and Planned Giving Officer, this has been highly convenient but also a really great experience. An added benefit is that the camp is priced very reasonably compared to many of the other camps in New Orleans. They offer free before care and reasonably priced after care. They also have great hours from 7am-6pm. This is our first summer of camp and the girls loved it. Plus they come home happy and tired every evening!

Kidcam is located in the Birthday Cottages at the back of the Carousel Gardens Amusement Park. According to their website they offer, “A large menu of sports, recreational activities, kid-friendly attractions and natural beauty. City Park makes the ideal location for a KIDCAM summer full of adventure, fun friends, and memories to last a lifetime. Campers have access to the Amusement Park rides at scheduled times throughout the week, as well as to Storyland, the {Goldring Waldenberg}Great Lawn, a large playground area, and they swim weekly at Woodlake Country Club.”

The girls will surly miss camp and the many friends they have made but I know we will be back. If you are looking for a camp next summer I would give Kidcam a try. 

Written by:

Geneva Longlois-Marney, Major Gifts and Planned Giving Officer

GMarney@nocp.org

Who won the car? Ask Friends of City Park!

Friends of City Park announce the Bryan Subaru Forester Raffle Winner!

TICKET NUMBER 567 – Debra Voelker!!!

Debra Voelker is a licensed clinical social worker and a third generation Mid-City resident. She serves on the board of the Mid-City Neighborhood Organization and is a member of the Pussyfooters, a women's marching and philanthropic group. She tries to spend a few hours in the park weekly on the jogging paths around the Big Lake and festival grounds and she has a beautiful 5 year old granddaughter who considers the "flying horses" one of her favorite places to be.

All proceeds raised through the Subaru Raffle will benefit the restoration of City Park’s Historic Wooden Carousel. Special thanks to Bryan Subaru for their generous donation and support!

For more information about Friends of City Park, please contact Casie Duplechain, Executive Director of Friends of City Park, at cduplechain@friendsofcitypark.com.