NEW ORLEANS — The New Orleans Recreation Department (NORD) Commission announced its Inaugural Alumni Picnic as part of a year-long celebration commemorating NORD’s 75th Anniversary. Last year the agency announced its plans to celebrate 75 years during the renaming celebration of Behrman Park to the Morris F.X. Jeff Sr. Park. The alumni picnic will take place from 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. on Saturday, July 23, at Joe W. Brown Park, 5601 Read Blvd. The picnic is an opportunity for past and current participants, volunteers, employees, and supporters to come out and celebrate NORD’s impact on community and recreation in the City of New Orleans.
The picnic includes competitive games and relays, bounce houses, live performances, food trucks, outdoor programming, and a live activation hosted by the New Orleans Saints and Pelicans. Confirmed performers include The NORD Senior Choir, DJ Jubilee, Partners and Crime, T-Ray The Violinist, Assata Renay, and 7th Ward Shorty. Food vendors include FedNFull Foodtruck, BBBC Cooking, and JB’s Softee Treats. Picnics, grilling, blankets, chairs, and 10×10 tents are also welcome. The event is sponsored by Wright Gray Trial Lawyers and is free to the public.
“Wright & Gray is honored to partner with NORD for its 75th-year celebration and inaugural alumni picnic,” said Wright & Gray Partner, Eric A. Wright. “NORD has been a vital program for the youth of the City of New Orleans for nearly a century. We look forward to celebrating this year and in years to come with those who contributed to NORD’s success.”
Other 75th Anniversary events include NORD’s second Annual Race of Champions, and Wrap Soiree, all of which will take place throughout the year and are open to the public. Proceeds from NORD anniversary events go directly to the NORD Foundation, benefiting NORD programming. NORD also launched a webpage, www.nordc.org/75thanniversary, where residents can sign up for newsletter updates, shop the 75th Anniversary Collection of memorabilia, shop park and playground t-shirts, and view a photo journey of NORD from 1947-today.
“The evolution of NORD over 75 years from a recreational outlet to now also being an essential arm of the city in post-disaster recovery and the pandemic is outstanding. It contributes to our vision to be a sustainable and innovative organization that transforms lives,” said Larry Barabino, Jr., NORD CEO. “I look forward to having our residents participate in all of the activities NORD is hosting to commemorate 75 years, and I cannot wait to see what the next 75 years entail.”
The New Orleans City Council created NORD through City Ordinance No. 16,630 on September 27, 1946, which went into effect on January 1, 1947. NORD has served as a space for community and youth recreation and programming activities. Today, NORD operates over 150 playgrounds, 17 swimming pools, 12 recreation centers, two tennis centers, five teen centers and five stadiums. NORD continues to offer programs including musical arts, visual arts, dance, athletics, summer camps for youth and teens and programming for seniors.
For more information on NORD 75th Anniversary events or NORD programming, please visit www.nordc.org or contact (504) 658-3052.