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Defender Picks



March 23rd

NOFW Runway Shows

Civic Theatre, 5PM

Fashion shows for the gulf region's top designers


Top Taco NOLA 

Spanish Plaza, 5:30PM

40 chefs compete for top taco prize


Ogden After Hours

Ogden Museum, 6PM

Feat. Bob Malone


Painters Painting Painters


Local artists celebrate each other in their work


Books and Beer with Friends

The Courtyard Brewery, 6PM

To benefit the Friends of New Orleans Public Library


Micah McKee and Little Maker

Blue Nile, 7PM

Folksy local singer-songwriter


Holy Yoga Gathering

Big Easy 'Bucha, 7PM

Worship and yoga in one


Classical Mystery Tour

The Orpheum Theater, 7:30PM

Music of the Beatles


Julie Odell / Luminais / Elizabeth McBride

Hi-Ho Lounge, 8PM

A night of angelic sounds


JD Hill & the Jammers

Bar Redux, 8PM

NOLA funk, trad and electric blues 


Comedy Gumbeaux

Howlin' Wolf, 8PM

Red Bean hosted stand-up show


John Papa Gros Band

Chickie Wah Wah, 8PM

Papa grows funk and so much more


Willy Gantrim / The Lostines / Ester Rose

Saturn Bar, 9PM



Soul Project

Café Negril, 9:30PM

All genres of NOLA music fused


The Soul Rebels

Le Bon Temps, 11PM

6th Ward brass mixes funk, soul, jazz and hip-hop


March 24th

Basic Buddhist Meditation

LIFE Yoga, 7AM

An intro course from Zen teacher Thich Thien Tri


Book Signing: Robert Wagner

Adler's New Orleans, 11AM

Hollywood legend signs copies of 'I Loved Her in the Movies'


Bourbon Festival

Marriot Convention Center, 6:30PM

Day one of the inaugural Bourbon Fest


DumbSmart Industries Showcase

The Broad Theater, 7PM

Short film showcase 


Kermit Ruffins & the Barbecue Swingers

Blue Nile 7:30PM

Friday nights with Kermit on Frenchmen 



House of Blues, 8PM

Hebrew hip hop


Varla Jean Merman Sings? 

Cafe Istanbul, 8PM

Preview of Merman's new show "Bad Heroine!" 


Flogging Molly

Joy Theater, 8:30PM

Celtic punk, feat. Skinny Lister


Edwardian Ball Circus Soirée

One Eyed Jacks, 9PM

Artist mixer before Saturday's Edwardian Ball


Kanye's Universe

Maple Leaf Bar, 10PM

Chapter Soul hosts a Kanye West dance party


Anglo a Go-Go

Bar Redux, 10PM

All-British dance party


Relapse 80s/90s Dance Party

Hi-Ho Lounge, 10PM

Party like it's 1999


March 25th

Brunch Fest

Crescent Park, 10AM

Eat to benefit LA/SPCA


Princess, Ponies & Superheroes 

Fair Grounds, 12PM

Family day at the grounds


Tank and the Bangas

The Yum Yum, 6PM

NPR faves come home from tour


Movie Screening: But I'm a Cheerleader

St. Mark's Church, 6PM

Caravan Cinema screens this Natasha Lyonne comedy


Charlie Wilson

Smoothie King Center, 7PM

Feat. Fantasia and Johnny Gill


Chris Rock

The Saenger Theatre, 7PM

Comedy superstar brings his "Total Blackout" tour to NOLA


Biz Markie

House of Blues, 7PM

80s vs. 90s - decades collide


Fleur de Tease

One Eyed Jack's, 8PM

FdT stages "Alice in Wonderland" 


Pancakes and Booze Art Show

The Howlin' Wolf, 8PM

NOLA's underground art show, plus free pancakes


The Rock and Roll Extravaganza

The Willow, 9PM

Masquerade ball with live music


Mod Dance Party

The Circle Bar, 10PM

Sweat to the oldies with DJ Matty


Daria & The Hip Drips

Le Bon Temps Roule, 11PM

Free show to move and groove


March 26th

Bloody Mary Fest

Howlin' Wolf, 12PM

Over a dozen NOLA spots offer their best bloodies, plus food


Alternative Medicine Symposium

Magnolia Yoga Studio, 1PM

Free female-led discussion and open house



Playmakers Theater, 2PM

Final staging of drama about painter Mark Rothko


Jamie Galloway Crawfish Boil

Maple Leaf Bar, 3PM

5th annual boil commemorating the life of the beloved chef and musician


LGBT Spring Fest

Woonderland Production Studios, 3PM

Live music, drinks, water slides, more


Music Under the Oaks

Audubon Park, 5PM

LPO Woodwind Quintet performs


Palmetto Bug Stompers 

d.b.a., 6PM

Local trad jazz masters


Board Game Night

Tubby & Coo's Mid-City  Book Shop, 6PM

Bring games, or join one at the store


Hot 8 Brass Band

Howlin’ Wolf Den, 10PM

Mix of brass standards and funky covers


Pat Casey & the New Sound

Spotted Cat, 10PM

Boundary pushing fusion jazz


Joe Krown Trio

Maple Leaf, 10PM

Krown on the B3 with Russell Batiste and Walter “Wolfman” Washington

Mardi Gras Zone Owner Stabbed in Robbery

Mardi Gras Zone owner Benny Naghi was reportedly in stable condition after he was stabbed in an early morning attack Friday after a man entered the Marigny store and attempted to rob it at knifepoint. Around 12:45 a.m., police said a person entered the store, produced the knife and robbed the cashier of an undisclosed amount of money. At that time, the man who friends identified as Naghi entered the store. He was stabbed several times by the robber, and taken to University Hospital, according to police.

Friends initially described the perp as a man with wiry gray hair. He reportedly fled the scene by bicycle. 


In recent months, robbers have targeted customers leaving Mardi Gras Zone. The move to hold up the store marks a more brazen turn at the largest grocery in the Marigny-Bywater area.


Best wishes Mr. Benny. So

Best wishes Mr. Benny. So sorry to hear about your injuries. Check with the NOLA police for victims' assistance. A few bucks to put out fliers might catch the nutcase who hurt you. Blessings <3


this dumbass who keeps making

this dumbass who keeps making all these stupid comments should go back up north to some gentrified city where stupid people are more blame crime on MGZ?how bout blaming the criminals dumbass?

I am not taking the time to

I am not taking the time to read every comment but for the record, it costs quite a bit more to operate an independent business anywhere but even more so in New Orleans. Insurance is much higher, taxes are ridiculous and without a distribution deal, Mardi Gras zone pays higher prices for everything. For a reader to suggest it is karma that Benny got stabbed over high prices is a wee bit f-ed up. I would rather give Benny, who employs people in my neighborhood, 6 bucks for a pint of ice cream at 2 in the morning, than give Walmart 3 for the same pint. It isn't a cheap place to shop for sure, but the alternative is to have no place to shop in the neighborhood.

"In recent months, robbers

"In recent months, robbers have targeted customers leaving Mardi Gras Zone. The move to hold up the store marks a more brazen turn at the largest grocery in the Marigny-Bywater area."

Uh, hey there Nola Defender, do you care to back the above statement up? Ya got any links to these generalized statements? If so, inform your community. If not, such sensationalism does no good.

we're having a party Sunday,

we're having a party Sunday, Benny, hope you can come

Benny - you'e the best! I

Benny - you'e the best! I love you man. Always a good human to all and a real gentleman. I'm so sorry this happened to you and I wish you a speedy recovery. See you in the aisles soon. ?? ?????? ??? (your friend), robert hannant

I'm sorry that dude got

I'm sorry that dude got stabbed. But yeah, that store is also sleazy. I call it "Money Grab Zone." Sorry he got stabbed but also sorry that place sucks. Karma?

Dude what sucks about the

Dude what sucks about the store? I fucking love that place! Great hand made pizza 24/7! An incredible inventory! You may want to edit your ignorant statement. It should read something like this. "A local store owner was stabbed by a rotten no good motherfucker that thinks that it is alright to rob an establishment because his life sucks. Benny, the store owner has dedicated himself to providing residents of the marigny with a much needed market and deli. It is a shame that in 2012 we are still dealing with armed robberies while half the new orleans police force is going to jail or handing out traffic tickets. This is why we need to carry guns, because assholes stil have knoves." Yeah I like mine a lot better.

Oh em gee! This is so

Oh em gee! This is so disturbing! Poor Benny! I hope he's on the mend. How frightening. I live in the immediate vicinity and was completely unaware that there was a rash of burglaries targeting MGZ customers.

To the people using this opportunity to complain about Our Dear Inconvenience Store: you're complete jerks.

Get well soon, Benny.

First the SOB that rob the

First the SOB that rob the place was white 5.8-5.9 medium build he was waring a red baseball cap, blue button up shirt, blue jeans and working boats and had a black gloves on his hands the SOB was seen running away from MGZ on royal street towered the Baywater at 12:42am If you or any body know any thing please call the 5th District(504-658-6050)

Get well Benny!

Get well Benny!

I live near by, first and

I live near by, first and foremost no one deserves what happened to Mr. Naghi and I hope his injuries are not too serious and that he has a full recovery.

Mardi Gras Zone has for the most part has negative impact on the immediate neighborhood. I have had to close windows or leave my garden because of smoke smell. I am constantly cleaning up soda bottles and wrappers from the street. I have been woken many times late an night by rowdy goings on. None of this was happening before MGZ opened as a store. I respect Mr Naghi's right to operate a business but he does not respect the immediate neighbors' rights to live it a decent environment. He tried to get a 24/7 liquor license which was thankfully denied. In a residential 'hood he really should be closing at 10 PM.

The Marigny is not a suburb,

The Marigny is not a suburb, people.

NEWS FLASH: Cities are noisy and sometimes they smell. I can only imagine what you would have thought about the businesses that occupied that stretch of warehouses 50 or 60 years ago.

"He does not respect the immediate neighbors' rights to live it a decent environment." Give me a break, dude! If you find the the area 'indecent', you need to seriously re-evaluate what you're looking for in a quality neighborhood.

"Dude" the Marigny is

"Dude" the Marigny is famously known to many as "America's First Suburb",and was in terrible shape after many folks moved even further out in the 60's. I think your complaining to one of the folks who came here in the 80's 90's and made it possible for a place like MGZ to exist. Many of the current homeowners that came here when it was a risk and very unsafe in the 80's and 90's helped define the Marigny as the hip safe neighborhood it is today. 24-hour businesses really were *never* a part of it and I don't think we need them nor do we need to be like other "cities" as you suggest. Perhaps it is you that needs to head to one of you noisy cities. This is NOLA and we are different. We don't want to see Washington Square to re-earn its old nickname of "Little Angola".

the marigny is a suburb one

the marigny is a suburb one of the 1st in the USA just a very unique one. I love it. as one of the folks that came here a few decades ago and helped revive it, lived through Katrina, a know for sure I know what I am talking about. you do not.. I have lived and worked and partied here for decades. I know you live no where near MGZ it is DOES contribute negatively to the immediate 'hood...while Mimi's, Flora, Sound Cafe, are all great neighbors...MGZ is not!!

Actually, that vicinity of

Actually, that vicinity of the Marigny was not a suburb. Know your history before you quote it. If you think a grocery store is loud, how would you feel about the warehouse the building was constructed as.
A man is in the hospital, and you are literally hitting him while he's down.
You are a poor neighbor and a poor human.


Are you FREAKING KIDDING ME?!?!?!?!?!

what are you credentials as a

what are you credentials as a Marigny resident? do you live near MGZ? how long have you been in this neighborhood? did you come here when is was a crime infested mess and help clean it up? ...thank you MGZ for bringing the crime back.

"Credentials"???? Are you out

Are you out of your mind?
I pay taxes and own property; that's my credentials you elitist ass.
And, I love the MGZ. It is a hub for those of who care about community not credentials.

Get better, Benny.

Get better, Benny.

Benny , You have always been

Benny , You have always been so courteous and kind to me every time I have shopped at Mardi Gras Zone and I imagine you treat all of your customers this way . I am so sorry that this happened to you . Get well . I for one will not stop shopping there , even at 1 am . The neighborhood is behind you guys !

Mardi Gras Zone is a magnet

Mardi Gras Zone is a magnet for trash, noise, and crime. It is operating without permits and should be closed down. The warehouse it's in used to be a tank-cleaning operation, so who knows what kind of solvents and other toxic stuff are still there.

Now that the Schwegmann's are being fined daily for not repairing the Robert's at Elysian Fields and Esplanade, I hope Robert's will put Benny's out of business soon with better food at lower prices.

MGZ must be paying off a bunch of people.

I think you mean Elysian

I think you mean Elysian Fields & St Claude.

Also, you sound like kind of a prick because this is about someone in our neighorhood being stabbed; that's a bigger problem for all of us than whatever you think you know about their permit compliance or the price of their goods.

To the Commenter, You, sir,

To the Commenter,
You, sir, are a fool and a blight upon our neighborhood. I bet you feel real empowered right now, anonymously slandering a man who is laying in the hospital after a vicious crime. And, then rambling on to wish him ill fortune in the future.
There is no place for you within either the Marigny or New Orleans.
Why don't you buy a ranch out Metaire where you can indulge in your masturbatory flights of community activism away from an actual community.

BENNY, you have always ignored these assholes, and built us a wonderful community center. Get better, and get back to the good work.

T. Boudreaux

Wow!! A man gets stabbed in

Wow!! A man gets stabbed in the neighborhood and this is your only response? Really? Noticed you didn't put a name with this. I don't shop at Mardi Gras Zone. have probably only been in there a handful of times in 2 decades. So what? A local business owner is stabbed in his own store, apparently multiple times, and you want to criticize his business practices. HE'S A HUMAN BEING, you ass. He has friends and family who are scared for his life and health, and you choose now to vent this kind of comment. Nice. I hope you are never put in this situation, because from how you've chosen to express yourself, you're not going to have a lot of support in your recovery. Try having some empathy and compassion for the pain of a fellow human being. Glad I don't know your name, you coward. I would hate to think I may actually know you.


hope the camera got a good

hope the camera got a good image- we can flyer the area with wanted posters

Love you Benny.

Love you Benny.

That's really disturbing. I

That's really disturbing. I hope they catch the piece of sh*t who did this and that the police club him mercilessly.

All the best to Mr. Naghi. We

All the best to Mr. Naghi. We love the MGZ.- Martin L. Morgan

Hang in there Benny. We can't

Hang in there Benny. We can't wait to see you again while we're doing our laundry, buying Asian spices, and browsing the boas. 

Oh Benny we love you! Get

Oh Benny we love you! Get well soon! What an awful thing to happen.

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Evan Z.E. Hammond, Dead Huey, Andrew Smith

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