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‘Jazz in the Park’ kicks off Thursday, April 17 with Glen David Andrews, 5th Ward Weebie, Landry-Walker Marching Band

Written by  People United for Armstrong Park
Jazz in the Park presented the People United for Armstrong Park (PUfAP) starts Thursday, April 17 with Glen David Andrews, 5th Ward Weebie and the Landry-Walker Marching Band. 
 
What's new at JITP--this year through our partnership with Positive Vibrations, we will host Congo Kids stage at Jazz in the Park. The Congo Kids stage will be produced by kids and will showcase New Orleans' finest young musicians.
 
But before we move forward, we thought it would be good to look back on how Jazz in the Park got it's start.
 
“New Orleans is a tight-knit city, you have to pay your dues.”
 
Emanuel Lain, President of People United for Armstrong Park, has been doing just that for the past four seasons of Jazz in the Park, and they’re going straight to the revitalization and reconnection of Armstrong Park to the Tremé and greater New Orleans. Being born and raised here didn’t absolve him from the social necessity of “dues-paying,” providing proof and a product that would work. In a post-Katrina city that had been flooded with water and well-meaning outsiders trying to “help,” the questions on everyone’s minds when the idea for a free concert series in Armstrong Park was pitched were simple: What do you want? Who are you? Why?
 
Quickly approaching what is to be a phenomenal fifth season, Jazz in the Park has undoubtedly made its purpose, desire, and community affiliation more than clear: “To make Armstrong Park the hub of New Orleans’ cultural economy.” The free concert series attracts thousands of people to the park, and continues to balloon every year, bringing people into the rich and resonant Tremé community in droves. A visitor during a past season affectionately called it her beach; “New Orleans doesn’t have beaches, but we have Armstrong. This Jazz in the Park is my ‘day at the beach.’”
 
While PUFAP provides this much-needed “day at the beach” with Jazz in the Park, it has a much wider impact and mission. Through the series, weekly employment opportunities are provided to out-of-work residents, local vendors and business are provided with a space to sell their wares, and the grim picture that’s been painted of Armstrong is slowly erased. In its place is left a portrait of hope and happiness, love and laughter, and a space where residents and out-of-towners alike can come together and feel at home.
 
In New Orleans, you have to pay your dues, and PUFAP is paying dues with dividends through Jazz in the Park, jump-starting what will surely become the hub of the Crescent City’s cultural economy.
 
See y'all Thursday at Jazz in the Park!
 
Jazz in the Park Schedule:
 
April 17        Glen David Andrews | Fifth Ward Weebie | Landry-Walker Marching Band
April 24        Kermit Ruffins | Big Freedia | Star Steppin Cosmonaughties
May 1          Christian Scott | TYSSON (new project of MyNameIsJohnMichael) | The Organ Grinders
May 8          Rockin Dopsie | James Andrews | The Dancing Grounds
May 15        Soul Rebels | Tank and the Bangas | The Disco Amigos
May 22        Bonerama | N’awlins Johnnys | Dance Troupe TBA
May 29        To Be Continued Brass Band | Daria & the Hip Drops | NOLA Cherry Bombs
June 5         Wild Magnolias | The Original Pinettes Brass Band | Myene West African Dance & Drum Company
Last modified on Wednesday, 16 April 2014
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