Axios New Orleans

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Hello! It's Tuesday. Those clouds were a bummer yesterday, huh?

Today's weather: Mostly cloudy with a high of 80.

  • A cold front arrives tonight, bringing storms and a severe weather threat tomorrow.

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ğŸŽ§ Sounds like: "Ain't Got No Home" by Clarence "Frogman" Henry.

Situational awareness: Eid Mubarak to anyone who celebrates!

Today's newsletter is 776 words — a 3-minute read.

1 big thing: Grow Dat and City Park in talks

Grow Dat's farm is in City Park off Zachary Taylor Drive. Photo: Courtesy of Grow Dat Youth Farm

A disagreement continues to churn between City Park and Grow Dat supporters after discovering the youth farm was erased on the park's new master plan.

Why it matters: The plan isn't final, but it represents a significant vision divide on how New Orleanians see the future of the city's largest park.

Catch up quick: The nonprofit that manages City Park has been working on a new master plan to redesign how the 1,300-acre park is used.

Zoom in: Grow Dat is an urban farming nonprofit that works primarily with young New Orleanians of color to teach them about growing food and developing their interpersonal skills.

Friction point: Grow Dat's lease will expire in 2027, and City Park does not plan to renew it, according to emails obtained by Verite.

  • City Park officials also claim Grow Dat owes back rent of more than $250,000, Verite reports.

Yes, but: Grow Dat tells Axios that City Park Conservancy never formally notified them about overdue rent.

  • "However, Grow Dat takes our financial obligations seriously," Grow Dat leadership told Axios yesterday, adding that they are "very willing" to discuss the estimate with park leaders.

Inside the room: Both groups confirm to Axios they are talking and hoping for a long-term resolution.

  • City Park Conservancy described the meetings as "productive" and "constructive."

Context: The current farm location has deep utilitarian, financial and emotional ties to the program, Grow Dat leaders say.

What's next: The next public meeting is planned for May.

Go deeper for what City Council vice president JP Morrell says

2. 🤑 Richest people in Louisiana

Gayle Benson owns the New Orleans Saints and the New Orleans Pelicans. Todd Graves founded Raising Cane's. Photo: Wesley Hitt/Getty Images on left, Roy Rochlin/Getty Images on right

Forbes' annual billionaires list features two Louisianans this year: Gayle Benson and Todd Graves.

Why it matters: Benson was on last year's list, but it's the first time for Graves.

The big picture: Graves, 52, founded Raising Cane's in Baton Rouge and is one of the new American billionaires, Forbes says.

  • Taylor Swift and Earvin "Magic" Johnson also are new on the list.

Zoom in: Graves has an estimated worth of $9.1 billion, Forbes said, making him the richest person in Louisiana.

  • Benson, 77, owns the New Orleans Saints and Pelicans and has an estimated worth of $6.1 billion, according to Forbes.

Go deeper for more about the rankings

3. Fully Dressed: Frogman dies at 87

Clarence "Frogman" Henry was a regular performer at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. He's seen here in 2010. Photo: David Redfern/Redferns

Clarence "Frogman" Henry died Sunday. The 87-year-old musician had a prolific career, including touring with the Beatles. (AP)

📺 "Saturday Night Live" brought a little Louisiana flair to the weekend show, with a sketch featuring Heidi Gardner as LSU coach Kim Mulkey. (YouTube)

A security guard at Wit's Inn in Mid-City was fatally shot while working the door at the bar. The City Council is calling for safety improvements. (WWL)

🛌 The Soniat House Hotel, Auld Sweet Olive Bed and Breakfast and Canal Street Inn are the city's best B&Bs, according to U.S. News. (Full list)

🛺 The city says staffers didn't boot the golf cart a reader saw over the weekend in the Bywater. So, we're leaning toward the explanation of the owner booting it for security.

4. 🦀 Best thing we ate: Dee's Xquisite's seafood

Dee's Xquisite makes a peach cocktail to pair with the seafood. Photo: Carlie Kollath Wells/Axios

👋🏻 Carlie here. Dee's Xquisite is making finger-licking-good boiled seafood in a New Orleans East strip mall.

Why it matters: The oysters give Drago's a run for its money, in my opinion.

What I ordered: Chargrilled oysters ($25.99) and the Xquisite package ($29.99).

  • The Xquisite package is the restaurant's most popular item, owner Demond Matthews says, and comes with a Dungeness crab cluster, corn, potatoes, shrimp and turkey necks.

The food was delicious. I especially enjoyed the oysters and the turkey necks.

The intrigue: The seafood stands out, Matthews says, because customers get a taste of boiled, smoked and grilled in each bite, along with his special garlic butter sauce.

See more pictures

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5. ♻️ Reduce, reuse, recycle

Illustration: Allie Carl/Axios

Jefferson Parish residents will have recycling options this weekend for the first time in 2024.

Why it matters: Curbside recycling ended in December 2023 when the contract expired and council members did not sign a new one.

The big picture: Two drop-off sites open Saturday where residents can bring their recyclables.

  • The sites are at 400 David Drive in Metairie and 6440 Lapalco Boulevard in Marrero.

What's next: Curbside recycling may return in Jefferson Parish, but leaders say they are ironing out details, such as whether residents will have to opt-in individually.

Go deeper to see what you can drop off

🌼 Carlie is heading to the nursery to pick out new flowers for her pollinator bed.

🥶 Chelsea thinks New Orleans spring is better than Wisconsin spring, and it's not even close.

Tell a billionaire to subscribe.

Thanks to our editor Fadel Allassan and copy editor Carlin Becker.