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Weekend Picks: Celebration in the Oaks, Saints vs. Panthers, and More

Celebration in the Oaks (Photo: Justen Williams)

This weekend in New Orleans, enjoy the chill in the air. With the holidays right around the corner, celebrations are beginning to take shape. The French Market Tree Lighting Ceremony will bring holiday cheer to the French Quarter, and Celebration in the Oaks lights up City Park. Enjoy a dance performance from Pilobolus in Shadowland, and literary lovers rejoice at Words & Music Fest all weekend long. Here are our picks for the weekend.


Words & Music Festival – Words & Music is a literary festival held annually in New Orleans. The four-day festival features a schedule of events such as “300 Years of New Orleans Literary History” and “Late Night Literature: Poets Respond to Gentrification.” Other events include various Literature and Lunch sessions, workshops, and a Jazz Happy Hour benefitting One Book One New Orleans which includes a performance from the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra. Tickets start at $10 and the festival is headquartered at the Ace Hotel.

Celebration in the Oaks (Photo: Paul Broussard)

Celebration in the Oaks – Catch a preview of Celebration in the Oaks this weekend. If you’d like to see what this year’s display has in store before everyone else, come to City Park for the Preview Party on Friday, Nov. 22. This cocktail attire event features entertainment from DJ RQ Away, food, drinks, and more. Jingle Bells & Beer on Saturday, Nov. 23 is a party for the young at heart, with live entertainment, craft beer, and carnival rides. Bring your kids to the Family Party on Sunday, Nov. 24 for kid-friendly food, unlimited rides, and access to the lights as well. Tickets for the Preview Party are $100 in advance, Jingle Bells & Beer are $40 in advance, and tickets for the Family Party are $30 in advance.

Christmas decorations in Jackson Square (Photo: Paul Broussard)


French Market Tree Lighting Ceremony – Celebrate the start of the holiday season with the French Market Tree Lighting Ceremony on Friday. Heritage School of Music will kick the event off at 6 p.m. with a performance leading right into the tree lighting ceremony at 6:45 p.m. Fireworks will follow at 7 p.m. The event is in Washington Artillery Park across from Jackson Square.

Pilobolus in “Shadowland” (Photo by Beowulf Sheeha)

Pilobolus in Shadowland – Sit back and go on a journey with Pilobolus in Shadowland – The New Adventure. Using mixed media, animation, dance, and shadow theater, this charming adventure is full of visual surprises that will enchant audiences of all ages. Tickets start at $35 and the performance is at 8 p.m. at the Mahalia Jackson Theater.


SOUVENIR Pop up at Blue Dream – Blue Dream Vintage Boutique will be hosting a one day pop up featuring an eclectic mix of objects from Mexico. SOUVENIR will present an affordable, curated selection of unexpected items ranging from traditional crafts and keepsakes to one-off collaborations with local artists. Sip tequila while you shop, and enjoy the pop-up from 5-8 p.m.


Saints vs. Carolina Panthers – This Sunday, the New Orleans Saints are back at home in the Superdome taking on the Carolina Panthers. Kickoff is at noon. Head downtown for the game or to one of our favorite sports bars to watch the action.

Lauren Saizan is a graduate of Loyola University and a lifelong New Orleanian. Currently the Associate Editor of GoNOLA, when she’s not writing or editing, you can find her dancing in the studio or traveling the world.

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