After a glorious Carnival, things are starting to get back to normal. The glitter has been swept, the costumes have been washed and put (mostly) away, and sleep and diet patterns are on track for a health(ier) spring.

 

> Classic Weekend

To that healthy end, the annual “running of the New Orleanians” will occur Saturday, April 16 at the Crescent City Classic. Now dubbed the Caesars Sportsbook Crescent City Classic, the Easter-weekend 10k has become a tradition, with runners, walkers, strutters and strollers hitting the streets from Champions Square to City Park. The CCC “Run for It” program also allows runners, like me, to raise funds for local charity organizations while enjoying the run. There’s a wide array of groups from Animal Rescue New Orleans to Team Gleason’s No White Flags organization to Girls on the Run New Orleans.

 

> Run for It

This year, I am running to benefit the New Orleans Musicians’ Clinic and Assistance Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting the local music, arts, dance and culture bearers that make the city of New Orleans great. They provide health care, meal programs, mental health resources and much more. As the quarantine restrictions begin to ease, it has become so much more vital to keep the beat alive for the creative icons and the hard-working performers across the city, and the New Orleans Musicians’ Clinic has been a key part of keeping things rocking and rolling. What would Carnival have been like without our marching bands, live music and performers to add the beat to our dance?

 

> Morning Show

Tune in or watch a live and in-person broadcast of NBC’s “Today with Hoda & Jenna” morning show this Thursday and Friday when co-hosts Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush Hager will broadcast from the French Quarter. Thursday’s show will air live from Jackson Square, while a second show, to be aired on Friday, will be taped. Guests include Harry Connick Jr., Anthony Mackie, New Orleans Saints’ Demario Davis and C.J. Gardner-Johnson, and Commander’s Palace chef Meg Bickford.

 

> An Open Book

Jenna Bush Hager will also kick-off this weekend’s (March 10-12) inaugural New Orleans Book Festival at Tulane University with a special appearance and panel discussion. She appears along with an array of renowned fiction and non-fiction writers such as John Barry, Roy Blount, Jr., Sarah Broom, Malcolm Gladwell, John Grisham, Michael Lewis, Maurice Carlos Ruffin and many more, for a multi-day experience covering a wide range of topics. The event will also host a “Family Day” on Saturday, March 12 with kid friendly activities and appearances by children’s book authors. The weekend will have something for everyone.

 

> Cool Down

Although the weather continues to go up and down like some kind of crazy fun-house roller coaster, spring is officially here. How do we know? Sal’s Sno-Balls in Metairie and Hansen’s Sno-Bliz on Tchoupitoulas Street are both open for business. We promise to keep you apprised on sno-ball stand openings as they become breaking news. Let me know your favorite stand and sno-ball flavor. And be sure to save me a ginger-nectarine!