Halloween in New Orleans and Philly

Chef Bill Beck with some revelers on Halloween at the Market

Halloween in New Orleans is a major event that spans several days, encompassing All Hallows Eve, Halloween itself, All Saints Day and All Souls Day.  With the varied cultural influences–French, Spanish, Cajun, Creole, Catholic, Voodoo–there are all sorts of traditions and associations unique to the Crescent City, such as…..

  • New Orleans is nicknamed “The Most Haunted City in America.”
  • On All Saints Day and All Souls Day (November 1 and 2) many New Orleans families visit cemeteries to honor departed ancestors in a “Day of the Dead” type of celebration.  They  clean, paint and decorate the grave sites–which are above-ground mausoleums due to fact that New Orleans is situated below sea level.  These gatherings tend to be social rather than somber; people distribute keepsakes and serve refreshments.
  • One theme of the Cemetery repast is “gluttony,” symbolizing the insatiability of death.  (rather macabre, no?)
  • Traditional grave side foods are spicy, featuring hot peppers and rum infused with habaneros.
  • The New Orleans Saints derive their name from All Saints Day–the day the football team franchise was given to New Orleans back in 1966.

Up here in Philly, our Halloween season tends to focus more on costumes and trick or treating.  We had a great time with our costume photo contest.  Thanks to everyone who entered and spread the Halloween spirit.  We were torn, but ultimately awarded the prize of Angel and Devil Dust Spice Rubs to Richard Twark for his picture  “Zombified:”

We also loved Tara Panchella’s picture of The Stiens:


and Alex Bender’s rendition of Jay Gatsby.  Happy Belated Halloween, Old Sports!

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