NOLA is known to be one big celebration, it’s something we’re proud of and can’t deny! After Thanksgiving, it’s nonstop until beads decorate our oak trees. But lets be honest, after Mardi Gras we only have a short break before gearing up for Jazz fest and a host of other festivals around town. While Mardi Gras is only a few weeks, it’s definitely a factor to consider when living or relocating to New Orleans and especially Uptown. There are parades, second lines and marching bands playing all across the city during carnival time. From float designing, krewe parties, band practices, dance teams and actual parades many New Orleanians are touched by carnival in some aspect of their life.
This time of year you can find beads in my front yard and a king cake on my counter. While I do business all over the city and consider myself knowledgeable in all areas, Uptown is the core of my business. Some would say “my forte”. In the broad sense of the term “Uptown” extents from Carrollton to the Warehouse district and there are many neighborhoods in-between, which I’ll go into greater detail in the near future. (Spoiler Alert on the next blog post topic.) From a buyer’s perspective, one of the most common criteria is proximity to the parade route. Many uptown parades follow a similar route, which I use to gauge a clients area of interest. Seasoned buyers know exactly where they want to live and many choose their location based solely on Mardi Gras. I’ll never forget the California clients I had right after Katrina whose only criteria was a large front porch on the parade route. For transplants boy do they host a heck of carnival party!
Agents with clients looking uptown must pose the question do you want to live “in the box”? A term used to express if the Mardi Gras festivities will literally box you in or block you in your neighborhood. This is important to consider with certain job constraints and accessibility to visitors who will come from parts unknown during carnival time. Some choose to be right on the other side of the route for easy access to their home during the season. Others choose to be close to a meeting ground or parade viewing location accessed by foot or bike. And then there are the people who are in the box like myself who choose to be in the middle of everything, which adds a whole different type of magic!
My current home is Mardi Gras gold, located a few doors down from Napoleon Ave. Being so close makes having kids during parade season a lot simpler. We are close to the beginning of the parade meaning we can see all the parades before it gets to late, which is great for bedtime plus we always have a bathroom. We literally don’t walk out our house until we hear those beautiful brass bands! Life in the box is great; I’m much closer to my neighbors here then when we lived on the other side of the Napoleon. Out of area people tend to shy away from this house thinking we are hard to get too, which lends to a tight neighborhood and an awesome gathering place for those who do make it.
Mardi Gras season isn’t just about the parades. No matter which hood you choose you quickly learn it has a lot to do with communities and relationships. There are always more layers to carnival and right when you think you understand, you learn something new. Every year there is a new creative parade or marching krewe introduced and so many other new gatherings. What can I say we let the good times roll!