Celebrating our Swamps
The 22nd annual Swampfest at Audubon Zoo will host a cultural celebration of New Orleans and the swamps for which we are famous � with tickets no more than regular zoo admission. Nov. 4-5, Zydeco and Cajun music will be played by a variety of bands from all over the state; featured musicians include the Savoy Family Band, La Touché, Dwayne Dopsie & The Zydeco Hellraisers, Doug Kershaw, the Pine Leaf Boys, Lafourche, Rosie Ledet and more. Arts and MARQUEEcrafts by statewide artists will also be sold. No party is complete without food, and Cajun dishes like fried alligator, boudin, crab cakes and cracklins from all over south Louisiana will tempt your tastebuds. (Just don�t let the �Jewel of the Swamp� a resident alligator at the zoo, see you eating his cousins.) Information, 581-4629.

Christmas Magic and School Spirit
De La Salle High School�s fundraiser on Nov. 17, �The Cavaliers Present Christmas Magic,� will take place at the Audubon Tea Room at 7 p.m. The evening�s festivities include a live auction with chances to win exotic vacations and other large scale prizes. The silent auction features a multitude of items, from gift certificates at local shops and restaurants, to jewelry and golf equipment. Plus, a �grab bag� table will offer gift baskets full of ornaments and dinner certificates. The Third Line Jazz Band will play throughout the event, and food and drink will be provided by the venue. All proceeds will benefit the school, which has been hosting the gala for over 25 years. Information, 895-5717 ext. 117.

Having a Ball for Heritage and Rebirth
On Saturday, Nov. 11, the New Orleans Hispanic Heritage Foundation will host its 16th annual fundraiser, �The Azucar Ball.� The theme this year, �Nueva Orleans Renace,� means �New Orleans Rises,� and those who attend are encouraged to dance, dine, reminisce and celebrate the rebuilding of New Orleans. The black tie event at the InterContinental New Orleans is in the LaSalle ballroom, and will last from 8 p.m.�1 a.m. Music by Julio y Cesar and AsheSon will play throughout the night and into the early morning. Food will be catered by the InterContinental, Azul, Dickie Brennan�s Steakhouse, August Restaurant, Arnaud�s, Liporio, Taquerie Corona and Churros Café. Proceeds from the silent auction � where guests can win trips Cabo San Lucas, Key Byscaine and Napa Valley, plus jewelry and gift certificates � will go towards the Foundation�s scholarship fund, which provides outstanding Hispanic students with scholarships to attend prestigious high schools in New Orleans. Those under 25 who wish to attend are offered a discounted ticket price. Information, 523-2600, ext. 139.

Lending a Hand
In conjunction with WDSU-TV, the 2006 Banner Ford Concept Home in the upscale Northshore neighborhood, the Sanctuary, is searching for volunteers to work in four-hour shifts during the weekends of Nov. 3 and 10. Those who sign up will help benefit the Bridge House � a nonprofit, long-term intensive treatment center for alcoholism and drug addiction; Bridge House has 130 beds and is the largest treatment facility of its kind in the state. The Banner Ford Concept Home in the Sanctuary is located in Mandeville. Information, Cathy@Crosbydevelopment.com andwww.wdsu.com.

Also, on Nov. 23, the Bridge House will be serving a Thanksgiving dinner for the underprivileged and homeless of our city. Information, 522-2124.

Saving Cemeteries
MARQUEEThe Fifth Annual One-Mile and 5K walk/run will take place on Nov. 5, 7:30 a.m. Hosted by the Lake Lawn Metairie Funeral Home and Cemeteries and the New Orleans Track Club, this event is a great way to exercise and help Save Our Cemeteries with their restoration and preservation projects. The course runs through the historic Metairie Cemetery, which was established in 1872. The one-mile course begins at 8:30 a.m. and the five-kilometer course begins at 9 a.m. After the walk/run, participants will be treated to live music and complimentary refreshments. Information, 467-8626.