Festivals for You: Tremé Fall Fest

Treme Fall Fest
Image courtesy of the Historic Faubourg Tremé Association via Facebook

Dancing to brass bands in the Tremé, mere feet from the stone steps of the nearly two-centuries-old African American church, sounds like a scene from a cinematic idealization of New Orleans. But for several years in a row, it’s been a reality, as the Tremé Fall Festival throws a serious party in the blocks connecting Henriette Delille, Tremé and Gov. Nicholls Streets — during the first weekend of October, just as the weather is getting nice. This year, the Fest will be held on Saturday, October 5, 10:30 a.m. – 7 p.m.

One of the nation’s first African American neighborhoods, Tremé has faced some historically important changes in the years following Hurricane Katrina. This cherished neighborhood has numerous cultural destinations including the New Orleans African-American Museum (NOAMM), Backstreet Cultural MuseumCongo Square, and the oldest African-American Catholic church in the United States, the historic St. Augustine Church (1210 Governor Nicholls St.).

The festival honors the unique history and heritage of the neighborhood. It was developed by the Historic Faubourg Tremé Association to benefit those cultural destinations found within the historical community of Tremé. The organization has been instrumental in the fight to preserve the culture, music, food, and architecture of this unique historic neighborhood. In the past, proceeds from Tremé Fall Fest benefited St. Augustine Church and the Tomb of the Unknown Slave — for example, to paint the church exterior and perform building repairs.

The free, donation-based festival features arts and craft vendors, face painting, free health screenings, tours of St. Augustine Church, and, of course, entertainment from New Orleans musical royalty. Tremé is famous for its music, with the annual festival lineup to match. Tremé All Stars, Olympia Brass Band, John Boutte, Hot 8 Brass Band, and Dwayne Dopsie & Zydeco Hellraisers had all performed at this festival in the past.

No New Orleans fest is complete without delicious food, and food trucks and vendors from some of New Orleans’ best eateries will be on hand all weekend long, so bring your appetite.

All day, you’ll find most of the action in front of St. Augustine Church on the 1100 block of Henriette Delille Street. Festival-goers are welcome to bring chairs and blankets and set up picnics.

Free parking is available at Armstrong Park via the St. Phillip St. entrance, as well as along N. Rampart St. and many other sites throughout the neighborhood, including the lot behind Aloysius apartments located at the intersection of Esplanade Avenue and Henriette Delille Street. Of course, you can also bike to the event or ride the Rampart-St. Claude Ave. streetcar line.

Get more info and updates on the music and food vendor lineup for 2019 at the event’s site and Facebook page.

Need somewhere to stay during your visit to New Orleans this fall? We have a packed schedule of festivals and other fun events! You can check out our top recommendations for what to do in New Orleans this fall here. Find your perfect historic French Quarter hotel at FrenchQuarter.com/hotels, within walking distance of many festivals and celebrations, including the Tremé Fall Fest!