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GoNOLA Recommends: 5 Things To Do In New Orleans This Weekend

This weekend in New Orleans features plenty of literary offerings to tickle your fancy, with the New Orleans Book Festival and the New Orleans Comic and Zine Fest, both on Saturday. Tickle your funnybone all weekend long, starting with Lewis Black at the Mahalia Jackson Theater on Thursday and at Hell Yes Fest events throughout the weekend. Take in a movie Friday night at an outdoor screening of Citizen Cane, or help Big Freedia break the world record for twerking on Saturday at the Central City Festival.

All Weekend

1. Hell Yes Fest – The annual comedy festival hosted by The New Movement returns this weekend, featuring improv, sketch, stand-up and storytelling, plus funny films and even video games. Hell Yes Fest events take place throughout the weekend at a variety of downtown venues, including The New Movement, Shadowbox Theatre, Hi-Ho Lounge, Allways Lounge, Siberia and Indywood. A full schedule and ticket information is available at

City Park hosts the 5th annual New Orleans Book Festival on Saturday, November 15. (photo:
City Park hosts the 5th annual New Orleans Book Festival on Saturday, November 15. (photo:

2. New Orleans Book Festival – The 5th annual New Orleans Book Festival takes place Saturday from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. at City Park, and features author talks, book giveaways, live music and more. This family-friendly event will offer plenty of activities for kids, including children’s readings, storybook characters, pony rides, face painting and more. Buses will provide free transportation to and from the festival from library branches throughout the city. A kick-off party Friday night at the Latter Branch Library will feature a special performance by the Greater New Orleans Youth Orchestra. More information is available at

Thursday, November 13

3. Lewis Black – Grammy Award-winning stand-up comedian Lewis Black performs at the Mahalia Jackson Theater for the Performing Arts this Thursday night at 8 p.m. Black rose to fame for his appearances on The Daily Show, and his comedic rants have won over audiences around the world. Advance tickets are available for purchase through the theater’s box office and Ticketmaster.

Friday, November 14

4. Movies in the Sculpture Garden: Citizen Kane – The New Orleans Film Society hosts the final installment of their fall outdoor film series Friday evening at the Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden in City Park. Movies in the Garden features live music and art activities from 5-7 p.m., with a screening of Citizen Cane at 7 p.m. Food vendors La Cocinita, Green to Go NOLA, and Crepes a la Cart will be on hand for refreshments. Admission is $8 for adults and $5 for NOMA/NOFS members and children.

Saturday, November 15

5. Central City Festival – The 8th annual Central City Festival takes place Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., in the 1600 and 1700 blocks of Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard. The event features a second line, cooking demonstrations, a health fair, local vendors, and live entertainment from local church choirs, dance troupes, and rock band Honorable South. Festival headliner Big Freedia will lead an official attempt to break a Guinness World Record for most people twerking simultaneously for two minutes. For a full schedule of events, visit


6. New Orleans Comic and Zine Fest – The New Orleans Public Library hosts the inaugural New Orleans Comic and Zine Fest at their Main Branch (219 Loyola Ave.) on Saturday, Nov. 15 from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. The event will feature more than 70 writers and artists from New Orleans and from around the country sharing their work, plus presentations on newspaper history in New Orleans, the how-tos of starting a zine, a Photoshop tutorial, a screening of Howl’s Moving Castle, kid’s activities, and live music. Learn more at

Mallory Whitfield is an artist, speaker, and author based in New Orleans. In 2016, she was honored to be included in the 19th class of Gambit’s 40 Under 40, which salutes the brightest innovators, artists, and professionals in New Orleans. She currently hosts the Badass Creatives podcast, which features marketing and business advice for creatives, as well as interviews with a diverse range of handmade artists, performers, makers, and creative entrepreneurs. During Mardi Gras, you can usually find her parading with Noisician Coalition in Muses or with The 501st Legion in Tucks.

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