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What to do at Tremé Fall Festival

Revel in the culture and spirit of New Orleans’ historic and beloved Treme on October 5, 2019.

Treme Fall Festival
The street festival at the Tremé Fall Fest (Photo: Paul Broussard).

Did you think the arrival of fall meant packing away your festival gear? Well, think again: New Orleans has a plethora of smaller neighborhood events in the months ahead, and leading the pack is the Tremé Fall Festival. 

Started by the Historic Faubourg Tremé Association (HFTA) in 2015, the festival has raised more than $50,000 to benefit the restoration of St. Augustine Church, a cultural landmark at the heart of the street festival, since its inaugural year. The festival is held at Henriette Delille and Governor Nicholls streets in Tremé from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 5.

Although it’s only in its fifth year, Tremé Fall Fest has become a quintessential New Orleans street festival: great music, delicious food, local arts and crafts, and a good cause behind it.

The exterior of St. Augustine Church. (Photo: Paul Broussard)
The exterior of St. Augustine Church (Photo: Paul Broussard)

Rich History

Tremé has the distinction of being America’s oldest African-American neighborhood settled by free people of color, and the St. Augustine Church is a treasured landmark in the area, dating back to 1841.

The neighborhood (or “faubourg” in French) is bounded by North Rampart Street, North Claiborne Avenue, St. Bernard Avenue, and Orleans Avenue. While small, the neighborhood packs a punch when it comes to cultural attractions per block: Louis Armstrong Park, the Jazz & Heritage headquarters, and the New Orleans African-American and Backstreet Cultural Museums are all within walking distance of each other. Besides attractions, the area is also famous for the wealth of talent it produces. Many of the city’s beloved musicians, including some featured in the fest’s lineup, have strong ties to Tremé. 

Tremé continues its rich cultural and musical traditions while bringing new visitors to the area. Residents are working to preserve and celebrate Tremé’s rich history. Check out highlights of the Tremé Fall Fest, most notably the music, below. 

Music

This year’s festival packs considerable talent. There’s a little something for everyone, from the legendary Tremé All-stars to Kermit Ruffins & The BBQ Swingers. Sets are short, keeping the energy high and your toes tapping. And lest we forget, the best part of small festivals is foregoing your “cubes” and not having to choose between musical acts. For the full music lineup, head to the Tremé fall fest website.

treme crafts
Crafts at Tremé Fall Festival (Photo: Rebecca Ratliff)

Food, Crafts, and More

Local food vendors and family-friendly crafts will round out the fest’s offerings, along with festival merchandise. This year’s food vendors include Tiger’s Creole Cuisine, Lil’ Dustin’s Italian Ice, Fatma’s Cozy Corner, J’s Seafood Dock, Bolingo’s Plant-Based Kitchen (Vegan), and Direct Select Seafood. Craft vendors include Baobab Tree Designs, Cavalier Expressions, De’Vard Designs, MsCrochetjig’s Creative Crochet, Stuart McClean, and Wilfred Designs.

Giving Back

The festival not only celebrates Faubourg Tremé, but it’s also dedicated to the continuing restoration of St. Augustine Church and surrounding landmarks. While the event is free, donations are encouraged. Funds raised will be used to continue the church’s restorations and aide other Tremé organizations dedicated to enriching the neighborhood.

Marianna Barry is a freelance writer and a New Orleans native. A proud Mid-Citizen, she graduated from NYU with a degree in English and a renewed respect for her hometown. She is a connoisseur of any dish involving bread and has an extensive menagerie of hot sauces. When not eating and writing, she can be found somewhere in the water along Bayou St. John.

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Treme Fall Festival

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