Nothing Square About It
All the cool kids will be at Wednesday at the Square
While some parts of the country are still shivering with below freezing temperatures, New Orleans is well into its outdoor music event season. The larger festivals are just around the corner, but a great weeknight series has already kicked off.
Wednesday at the Square started last week with “The Soul Queen of New Orleans” Ms. Irma Thomas, and continues with 11 more performances through the spring. The free music series is an annual event organized by the Young Leadership Council (YLC) and proceeds benefit the community service projects and leadership training that are intrinsic to YLC’s mission. Some of their projects you might see around town are Where Ya’ Rack?, a bike rack installation program, YLC Recycles, RECreate, and many other initiatives focused on the youth population in New Orleans.
Located at Lafayette Square in the Central Business District, it’s an easy walk or bike ride from the Warehouse District or French Quarter, as well as being located near the street car and bus lines. Nestled between St. Charles Avenue and Camp Street among the office buildings and court houses, the park blends the flora of our city with some intriguing architectural views. And when the people arrive, the fauna can’t be beat.
The crowd is always an interesting mix of locals arriving straight from work in their suits, families with children still in their school uniforms, those mysterious people who always seem relaxed and never seem employed, and visitors from out of town who know what the best show in town will be on any Wednesday in the spring.
The music is the thing but the food is a close second. The 2017 vendor lists includes: Ajun Cajun, Belle’s Diner, Bienvenue Bar and Grill, Crêpes à la Cart, Frencheeze Food Truck, Gretna Depot Cafe and Spirits, Imperial Woodpecker Snowballs, Jambalaya Girl, Lucy’s Retired Surfer Bar and Restaurant, Oceana Grill, Saucey’s BBQ, Theo’s Neighborhood Pizza, Vegan Chef NOLA, and Voodoo BBQ. To keep the event free for the public, plan to purchase your food and beverages from the vendors and refrain from bringing outside food and drink (except for medical reasons). Keep in mind that vendors’ items are purchased with tickets, and tickets can be bought with cash or credit card at tents located throughout the Square.
There is also an artist village and nonprofit showcase where you can buy meaningful jewelry and fine art from locals and learn about some of the community work being done in the region.
All shows start at 5:00 p.m. and the second performance is usually finished by 7:30 p.m. Check the sunset timing and temperature to plan sunblock and sweater needs accordingly.
March 22 – Amanda Shaw & The Cute Guys, opened by Daria and the Hip Drops
March 29 – March Broussard, opened by Kristin Diable & The City
April 5 – George Porter Jr. & Runnin’ Pardners, opened by RumpleSTEELSkin
April 12 – Jon Cleary and co-headliner John Papa Gros Band
April 19 – Big Sam’s Funky Nation, opened by Naughty Professor
April 26 – Flow Tribe, opened by Robin Barnes
Tuesday, May 2 – Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah, opened by The Tipitina’s Interns
May 3 – Kermit Ruffins and the Barbeque Swingers and co-headliner Marcia Ball Band
May 10 – PJ Morton, opened by Andrew Duhon Trio
May 17 – Headliner to be announced, opened by Mia Borders
May 24 – Sweet Crude and co-headliner Tank and the Bangas