Editor’s Notes

A Note from Bev – We’re Back!

We’ve all been impacted by Hurricane Ida, and I hope that you and your family made it safely through the storm! The levees held thanks to the millions of dollars of federal funds spent in our region – of course we’re grateful! Now that Ida is gone, we want to turn to ways you can help your neighbor. We’re such a resilient community because of the generosity of our citizens. 

I don’t have space to mention every nonprofit working tirelessly to help, but help any way you can, especially if it’s a neighbor or family member who needs you! Here’s a limited list of nonprofits that are looking for donations and volunteers to continue their work post-Hurricane Ida: Second Harvest Food Bank, Imagine Water Works, American Red Cross, United Way of Southeast Louisiana, Louisiana SPCA, New Orleans Musicians Clinic, Ochsner Philanthropy, Louisiana Children’s Hospital, Feed the Second Line, Culture Aid New Orleans and Bastion. In addition, GoFundMe, the online crowdsourcing company, has created a centralized page for Ida-related relief efforts GoFundMe.com/c/act/hurricane-ida/fundraisers.

I’ve been so impressed with the incredible chefs in our city who continue to feed those reeling from a lack of power and recourses! Thanks to Michael Gulotta of MoPho who opened his restaurant to people so they could take what they needed from his kitchen inventory. NOCHI partnered with José Andrés of the World Central Kitchen to cook and distribute food to desperately needy New Orleanians. Kelly Mayhew came back from Texas to open her bakery to be a gathering place for people who needed everything from diapers, dog food and coffee and more. Blue Oak BBQ prepared community meals for people without power. These are only four of the many – I know I’ve left out so many! – who’ve stepped up for their community when their businesses are still suffering from the whole pandemic situation. 

Let’s continue to look out for our neighbors. Together, we’ll get through this and make New Orleans and our neighbors stronger than ever!

Editor's Notes

Bev Church


On the Cover

The sun sets behind St. Louis Cathedral and the French Quarter after Hurricane Ida moved past the area Monday, August 30, 2021. 

As a new dawn rose, the recovery began. Now, over a month later, we continue to help our neighbors, both in New Orleans and throughout the region. Read more about ways to do so in our Editors’ Notes and in Finishing Touches, and follow our continually updated nonprofit events calendar online at StCharlesAvenue.com. 

Associated Press image photographed by Eric Gay



Bevs Note Courtesy Noma

The New Orleans Museum of Art’s “Odyssey 2021 Presented by First Horizon” will celebrate and enhance NOMA in an evening of unparalleled elegance. Critically important to the museum and the wide community it serves, “Odyssey” raises the funds necessary to support NOMA’s nationally recognized exhibitions and educational programs.

Chairmen Katherine and Tony Gelderman and Jennifer and Dennis Lauscha, and NVC Chair Robyn Dunn Schwarz, promise an amazing experience on Friday, November 12, beginning with a Patron Party at 7 p.m., followed by the gala at 8 p.m.

Learn more and purchase your tickets today at NOMA.org/event/odyssey2021.


A Note from Morgan – Reflecting On Recovery

I’ve always found beginnings the hardest thing to write. I’ve tried making outlines, starting in the middle or the end – all the tricks – but, for me, if I can’t start at the beginning then I’m not writing about the right thing.

But this thing, this recovery thing, it’s so big that I keep sitting with my fingers hovering over my keyboard and …. 

As I write I’m listening to my son play with his older cousins, while the baby jumps in a bouncer and my father-in-law joins in from his chair. It’s a moment of calm, comparatively. But what’s making me tear up is just how lucky we are. Even when they’re all screaming and no one is getting along and we’re (all 10 of us) getting on each others nerves, we’re so very lucky. 

If you were able to read our last, 25th anniversary, issue (first, thank you!) you might’ve read my piece on Avenue’s history. What I didn’t touch on was the history of our parent company. Renaissance Publishing was founded in the wake of Katrina; its name, taken from the first cover of New Orleans Magazine published post-Katrina, headlined “And Now the Renaissance.” 

I hope as you’re reading this that things are mostly back to normal in New Orleans. That schools, restaurants, businesses and people are open, kind and only occasionally reminded of yet another hurricane that could’ve been much worse. 

But most of Louisiana wasn’t as lucky and will need our help for months to come. I know that many of you have family, friends, property and businesses in areas that were hardest hit, like Lafayette, St. Bernard, Port Fouchon and Grand Isle. I encourage you to do your research and send funds to those organizations that are doing great work for our state. There are so many ways to help, but I’d like to turn your attention to two that have astonished me.

Culture Aid NOLA is a 501©3 launched in March 2020 as a collaborative effort between several cultural service nonprofits to combat food insecurity heightened by the COVID-19 pandemic. Their team has been feeding our friends and neighbors in amazing numbers. Learn more at CultureAidNola.org/ida_help.

BayouFund.org is a nonprofit fund spearheaded by Chef Melissa Martin of Mosquito Supper Club and Jonathan Foret of Helio Foundation to help people in Martin’s native Terrebonne Parish. As of September 9, they had raised $220,000 in four days. While that’s an amazing achievement, it’s only a drop in the bucket for all of those who have lost so much and those who want to rebuild.  

This issue is a little shorter than we had planned. As with many things during this pandemic, and now during hurricane recovery, we were forced to pivot or cut several planned columns and features. Please keep our writers, photographers and staff who need to focus on their homes and lives in your hearts.

In this issue I’m excited to showcase a feature on our changing health priorities as we age, including sections on mental health and cannabis. Bev brings you the Landis’ 50th wedding anniversary. And, we have more than 10 fundraisers for you to enjoy; What’s Hot focusing on art; profiles of New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and Foundation’s Don Marshall and Court Watch NOLA’s Simone Levine; Dreda Romig’s wedding to Conor Lutkewitte; How to Host focusing on Unexpected Outdoor Entertaining; and much more.

My husband just brought me another cup of his amazing coffee in my favorite mug. It’s from Sword in the Stone and as you drink, it reveals a message that feels appropriate: It’s up to you how far you’ll go; if you don’t try, you’ll never know.

Take care of yourselves and continue to be kind to one another,

Editor's Notes

Morgan Packard Griffith


Update Us!

St. Charles Avenue is continually updating its Nonprofit Events Calendars –  and we need your help! Please either fill out our online form or email me directly with your postponements, cancellations and new events. 

Visit StCharlesAvenue.com and click on the link “Submit a Charitable Event”, or email me at Morgan@MyNewOrleans.com.

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