Bastille Day is celebrated in France much like we celebrate Independence Day in the US. It commemorates two days – July 14, 1789, in which the Bastille was stormed and overcome by French citizens, and July 14, 1790, The Fête de la Fédération, which celebrated the unity of the French Nation, and peace following the violence of the former year. In New Orleans, which is also known as “Most French of American Cities”, Bastille Day is celebrated as well!
On July 11th, the Alliance Française of New Orleans, and partners, the French Consulate and French-American Chamber of Commerce are throwing the Bastille Day Fête in Spanish Plaza from 11:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. There will be live music, French cuisine vendors, lots of fun for the kids, and a “French Dog” contest. This is a free event.
On the 12th at 11am, the CitroëNOLA French Car Club will have a parade from the Bywater neighborhood area, along Chartres Street to Canal and through the French Quarter area to their final destination parked along the 700 block of Frenchmen Street along Washington Square Park. The cars and their knowledgeable owners will be available for viewing and visiting from noon-4pm. Juts before 4pm, make your way to Decatur Street between Jackson Square and the French Market for the Bartender and Waiters Race. After the race, attend the awards ceremony and enjoy live music.
Monday the 13th features the Alliance Française French Cooking Class at the Southern Food & Beverage Museum. This is not a free event, and registration is required. Also on the 13th, Encore Aznavour! will take place right here in our neighborhood at the Mid-City Theater. Featuring the music of the legendary Charles Aznavour, this is an elegant evening you won’t want to miss!
The Festivities come to an end on Tuesday the 14th at 10am, as the Council of French Societies lays a ceremonial wreath at the Statue of Jeanne d’Arc at the French Market. A celebratory glass of wine (soda for kids) will be offered by the Council of French Societies.
No matter when you come to New Orleans, you will find unique and fun activites going on!