NORDC Celebrates Black History Month

Dr. Louis Charles Roundanez, founder of The New Orleans Tribune
Dr. Louis Charles Roundanez, founder of The New Orleans Tribune

The New Orleans Recreation Development Committee is inspiring the community with its celebration of Black History Month with Health in the Black Community from 6 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 27 at the Cut-Off Recreation Center in Algiers.

The event will feature free fitness activities and health screenings along with the opportunity to learn more about Black Girls Run, a national running group created to combat obesity in the African-American community.

The event is free. For more information visit

Local Groups to Mark 125th Anniversary Dr. Charles Roudanez’s Death

Local historical and cultural groups, scholars, students, and direct-descendants will host a ceremony at
1 p.m. Wednesday, March 11, honoring Reconstruction-era activist and newspaper publisher Dr. Louis Charles Roudanez (1823-1890). The date marks the 125th anniversary of Roudanez’s death.

The event will start near the intersection of Conti and Chartres Streets at the building that housed the original New Orleans Tribune. A second-line parade will proceed to St. Louis Cemetery No. 1. A graveside musical tribute and a blessing of the Roudanez tomb will be followed by an unveiling of a historical marker honoring Dr. Roudanez.

Dr. Roudanez was a free man of color, educated in France, with ancestral ties to colonial Saint-Domingue (Haiti). In 1862, Roudanez and other free men of color launched a bilingual journal L’Union (The Union), the first Black newspaper in the American South. In 1864, a successor paper, the New Orleans Tribune, became the first Black daily paper in the United States. The public is invited to participate in this tribute to one of America’s first Civil Rights fighters.

The graveside dedication will be followed by a public forum “History and Memory: Reclaiming the Legacy of Louis Charles Roudanez and America’s First Civil Rights Movement.” Presentations will be held in the nearby Basin Street Station.

The anniversary events will culminate with a 6:30 p.m. reception to be held at Le Musée de f.p.c, 2317 Esplanade Ave.

Taste of Dillard Cook-Off Will Raise Scholarship Funds

Dillard University and the United Way of Southeast Louisiana will host a “Taste of Dillard Cook-Off ” from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, March 7 on Dillard’s campus, 2601 Gentilly Blvd. Each year Dillard University joins forces with the United Way of Southeast Louisiana to mobilize the community around a single goal: improving lives in the Greater New Orleans area. This year the United Way Fundraising event at Dillard will be a cook-off competition with the proceeds going to scholarships for Dillard students.

The event will also feature live music performances and entertainment with a special guest host, celebrity chefs, a silent auction, and raffle.

Tickets are available for purchase and include all access to the ‘Taste of Dillard Cook-Off,’ unlimited food samples, and non-alcoholic beverages. VIP Patron tickets are also available for purchase and include unlimited food samples, non-alcoholic beverages and access to the VIP Lounge at the Dillard Alumni House on campus that will feature specialty food items and samples.

NFD Celebration on March 28

The Neighborhood Development Foundation is celebrating its 20th anniversary with a patron party and gala on March 28 at First NBC Bank, 210 Baronne St. The patron party begins at 6 p.m. in the third floor board room. The gala will follow in the bank’s historic lobby.

NDF provides education, and advocacy that makes owning and maintaining a home affordable. The Mission of the Neighborhood Development Foundation is to educate and assist low and moderate-income families to build asset through homeownership.

Delgado is one of Nation’s Fastest Growing Community Colleges

Delgado Community College was named one of the nation’s fastest-growing public two-year colleges with enrollments of at least 10,000 students, according to a recent special report in the publication Community College Week.

Established in 1921 and enrolling more students than any other higher education institution in the New Orleans region, Delgado is at number 22 on the publication’s 2014 list of the Top 50 fastest-growing public two-year colleges that enroll 10,000 or more students.

The list was compiled from an analysis of U.S. Department of Education data for fall 2012 and fall 2013. In that period, Delgado experienced 3.3 percent growth in student enrollment, from 18,096 to 18,698.

The list includes students enrolled in for-credit programs only. It does not include students involved in workforce development initiatives. Delgado has about 15,000 additional students who fit that description.

NOCCA Students Bring Story of Homer Plessy to Stage

plessyNineteenth century New Orleans civil rights activism will come alive in a dramatic presentation by NOCCA (New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts) students at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 22 in Bishop Polk Hall at Trinity Episcopal Church, 1329 Jackson Avenue. The fast-paced, energetic production entitled “SE-PA-RATE” recreates the arrest and conviction of Homer Plessy.

Following the performance, teenage responders will take questions from the audience and pose questions to the cast. The production is free and open to the public.

It also sets up an imaginary dialogue between the actors and the historical players about how and why they did what they did and then examines how we separate ourselves from each other today.

On June 7, 1892, Plessy bought a first-class railway ticket from his home in New Orleans to Covington, north of Lake Pontchartrain. The two-hour trip had hardly begun when Plessy was arrested and removed from the train. Plessy’s act of civil disobedience was the result of a carefully choreographed campaign planned by the Comite des Citoyens, a group of freemen of color who had watched their rights disappear under the increasingly strict Jim Crow laws of the post-Reconstruction period.

His case went all the way to the Supreme Court of the United States, but failed. “Separate but equal” was enshrined as the law of the land until it was finally overturned by the Supreme Court in the Brown vs. Board of Education decision in 1954.

This production is supported by the Commission on Race and Reconciliation of the Episcopal Diocese of Louisiana, St. George’s Episcopal Church, Justice and Beyond, the People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond, The New Orleans Tribune, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Our Lady of the Lake Catholic Church, the Tulane Episcopal Chapel of the Holy Spirit, and the Atlas Foundation of Louisiana.

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