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Christmas New Orleans Style

Updated on September 22, 2018
naturegirl7s profile image

Louisiana has many unique sites and interesting places to visit. Yvonne enjoys sharing her knowledge of local history, customs and events.

A traditional Christmas tree at my in-laws in New Orleans in the 1980's. Dottie loved to decorate and celebrate the holiday season.
A traditional Christmas tree at my in-laws in New Orleans in the 1980's. Dottie loved to decorate and celebrate the holiday season.

Louisiana Holiday Traditions

Every part of the world has it's Holiday Traditions. But for post Katrina New Orleans, LA, many of these traditions are just fond memories. For many native New Orleanians a part of their history was washed away on that famous day in late August, 2005.

My husband was born in New Orleans and I have family roots there, too. Together, with this lens, we hope to bring back some of the memories of those Christmases past. You'll find Celebration in the Oaks, Fires on the Levee, Benny Grunch, holiday foods and also links to plenty of Louisiana products and food baskets (including Mr. Bingle) that would make unique holiday gifts.

Christmas in New Orleans

was filled with Family, Fun, Food, Music, Majesty and Reverence.

New Orleans Christmas Memories

Let us go back to the 1950s through the 1980s when life was simple and the songs were about love in this great city on the Mississippi River. Christmas was a magical time and Canal Street was the center of that magic. Stores like Goudchaux's and Maison Blanche decked out their windows with colorful displays. Mr. Bingle, the funny little snowman with the ice cream cone hat was on every child's mind. Christmas dinner was a true feast, with several generations of families in attendance. My husband's Mother was Italian and Irish and the feasts that she prepared would put some chefs to shame.

There was something magical about Christmas in New Orleans. Whether it was the lighting displays in the park and later in the 1990s at the home of Al Copeland (Popeye's Chicken), the Christmas on the Bayou boat parade or the bonfires on the levee, the multicultural population made the Holiday celebration exceptional.

Al Copeland's Famous Christmas Light Display

To see more pictures of the fantastic light display click on the link to's photo archives.
To see more pictures of the fantastic light display click on the link to's photo archives. | Source

The lovely lights in City Park.

Celebration in the Oaks

New Orleans City Park

Some of the popular events of Christmas in the Oaks include: T-Rex, the popular raptors. These are part of the Dinobration exhibit, a crowd favorite since 2003. Also new are the Very Merry Maze, a dancing light show, and a snow machine that will keep Mr. Bingle chilled with hourly snow showers. Of course, the fabled Carousel will be operational, complete with new lighting and music, and the train will take patrons on an enchanted journey highlighted by an electrifying light display along City Park Avenue. A rich tradition is New Orleans' signature, and nowhere is that tradition more evident than during the Christmas season at Celebration in the Oaks. Join us as we continue to rebuild our great city and share in the joy and spirit of our 24th annual Celebration.

More about Celebration in the Oaks

Good Food - Holiday Feast

The delicious holiday dinner menu that Dottie Bordelon usually prepared.

Roasted Turkey or Baked Ham

Oyster Dressing

Stuffed Mirlitons

Cranberry Sauce

Sweet Potatoes (with little marshmallows on top)

Italian Salad

Twisted Italian Bread with poppy seeds (Usually from Gambino's Bakery.)

Bread Pudding

Mr. Bingle Jingle

Jingle, Jangle, Jingle, here comes Mr. Bingle...

with another message from Kris Kringle.

Time to launch the Christmas Season,

Maison Blanche makes Christmas pleasin.'

Gifts galore for you to see,

each a gem from... MB."

Mr. Bingle YouTube Vid

Fleur de Guardian

Many Christmas trees are decorated with black and gold Fleur de lis ornaments such as this Fleur de Guardian one.
Many Christmas trees are decorated with black and gold Fleur de lis ornaments such as this Fleur de Guardian one. | Source

Lift Up Your Voices

New Orleans, Birthplace of Jazz and a Multitude of Talented Musicians.

Benny Grunch's 12 Yats of Christmas Video

New Orleans, a Unique City

New Orleans is unique to say the least. This primarily Catholic city has been a melting pot for many cultures for many years, dating back to before the Louisiana Purchase. The French and Spanish influence is still evident in the architecture and customs. Because of this, New Orleans and most of South Louisiana is set apart from the rest of the state. It is almost as if there are 2 very different states. Holiday celebrations are steeped in and influenced by the traditions of the European ethnic groups, including French, Acadian (Cajun), Spanish, Italian, Irish, German, Creole, African-American and several other groups that settled there.

Christmas Eve Bonfires on the Mississippi River Levee

Miles of bon fires on the levee guide Papa Noel to his destination and a good time is had by all.
Miles of bon fires on the levee guide Papa Noel to his destination and a good time is had by all. | Source

Here's the list. It's official - 10 ways that you know it's Christmas in New Orleans.

© 2008 Yvonne L B

Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

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    Post Comment
    • TreasuresBrenda profile image

      Treasures By Brenda 

      9 years ago from Canada

      Sounds like a lovely Christmas.

    • naturegirl7s profile imageAUTHOR

      Yvonne L B 

      11 years ago from Covington, LA

      Thanks Linda, New Orleans was a wonderful place during the holidays.

    • Linda BookLady profile image

      Linda Jo Martin 

      11 years ago from Post Falls, Idaho, USA

      Beautiful holiday lens!

    • thepartyanimal2 profile image

      The Party Animal 

      12 years ago from Partytown USA

      Yahoo you are a winner in The Squidoo Home for The Holidays Lens Contest So Go Grab your badge.

    • AlisonMeacham profile image


      12 years ago

      I have never visited New Orleans but would love to one day. Great to learn about their Christmas traditions.

    • profile image


      12 years ago

      It's been many a year since I was last in New Orleans. You've done a great job on capturing the spirit of this city.

    • piedromolinero profile image


      12 years ago

      It is always nice to get to know different traditions. This lens shows in a beautiful way the traditions of celebrating Christmas in New Orleans. Welcome to the Christmas Decorations group.

    • profile image


      12 years ago

      Welcome to The Totally Awesome Lenses Group.


    • profile image


      12 years ago

      I congratulate you on making such a positive lens about a great holiday in a city that has been struck by tragedy. This kind of positivity helps in so many ways.

    • Kiwisoutback profile image


      12 years ago from Massachusetts

      I went to New Orleans in 2002 pre-Katrina, but I'd love to make the visit down there again someday. Excellent work here!

    • profile image


      12 years ago

      Beautiful lens. Part of the joy of Christmas is sharing family traditions.



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