New Orleans neighborhood news for April 4-10, 2013

Treme

CELEBRATION OF THE AFRICAN-AMERICAN CHILD: The Umoja Committee presents the 22nd annual Umoja Village at the Celebration of the African-American Child in Armstrong Park, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

People will experience a day interacting with culturally and developmentally appropriate African-Centered activities developed by The Umoja Committee for all children and families, including workshops in dance, drumming and capoeira, as well as spoken word and storytelling.

The Umoja Committee is a group of volunteers dedicated to building relationships and resources for the betterment of children and the entire village. For information, contact Olayeelah Daste at (214) 514-1266.

Uptown

BOOK SIGNING: The Garden District Book Shop presents author Mark Laflaur, discussing and signing his book, “Elysian Fields,” from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at the shop, 2727 Prytania St. A Southern Gothic snapshot of a New Orleans family laced with mental illness and rivalry. For information, call (504) 895-2266.

HARRY SHEARER TO SPEAK AT LOYOLA: Harry Shearer, the legendary bassist in the 1984 rock and roll mockumentary “This is Spinal Tap” and the voice of more than 20 characters on the hit animated sitcom “The Simpsons,” will discuss the evolution of his career at a forum at 5 p.m. Monday at Loyola University.

The event is free, open to the public and will take place in Nunemaker Auditorium in Monroe Hall.

Faubourg St. John

DEAF EQUAL ACCESS: Deaf Equal Access Foundation of Louisiana will show “The Hammer” beginning at 7 p.m. Saturday at Fair Grinds Coffeehouse, 1333 Ponce de Leon St., on the second floor. Tickets are $10 ahead of time or at the door.

This social/fundraiser will raise money for outreach to the deaf, deaf-blind and hard-of-hearing community in Louisiana.

“The Hammer” is about a deaf Ultimate Fighting Champion. This film is for everyone.

Gentilly

DILLARD ART AND MUSIC FEST: Dillard University hosts its International Arts & Music Festival, featuring entertainment, art and cuisine, from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday on the college’s front lawn, 2601 Gentilly Blvd.

Proceeds from the event will help provide scholarships for Dillard University students studying abroad and international students entering under provisional admissions programs in the Department of International Students and Study Abroad Program. For information, call (504) 816-4926.

CLEANUP IN EDGEWOOD PARK: Edgewood Park has a neighborhood cleanup day planned for Saturday. Volunteers will include neighbors, students from Holy Cross, Brother Martin and the New Orleans Baptist Seminary, and trustees from Orleans Parish Prison.

Donations of food are still being sought. For information or to help out, call (504) 451-6885.

Mid-City

SPRING GARDEN SHOW: The spring garden show will be held from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. April 6-7 at the Botanical Garden in City Park.

There will be exhibits, educational speakers and activities for children. A member of the sponsoring LSU Agricultural Center faculty will be on hand to diagnose plant diseases.

Plants propagated in the Botanical Garden will be sold.

DOG DAY AFTERNOON: The Louisiana SPCA holds its annual walkathon and festival Dog Day Afternoon from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at New Orleans City Park’s Big Lake Lawn near the entrance of the New Orleans Museum of Art.

The walkathon is an opportunity for the community to raise funds for the more than 20,000 homeless and companion animals the LA/SPCA cares for each year. Prizes, celebrity MCs, pet-friendly vendors. To sign up, go to la-spca.org/dogday or call LA/SPCA events coordinator Marisa Collins at (504) 762-3307.

Lakeview

ZONING PANEL MEETS: The Zoning Review Committee meets at noon Friday at the Gulf Coast Bank & Trust, 848 Harrison Ave. The meetings, held the first Friday of every month, are open to the public and discuss a variety of issues regarding the development of Lakeview. Residents’ participation is encouraged.

TASTE AT THE LAKE: The third annual Taste at the Lake fundraiser takes place from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Saturday at West Lakeshore Shopping Center, 135 Robert E. Lee Blvd. Tickets start at $50 and include all food, wine and spirits from the many participating restaurants, caterers and beverage vendors.

The event supports the ongoing restoration of Lakeview, including the “Lighting the Way” project at New Basin Canal Park.

To take part as an event volunteer, food and beverage vendor or sponsor, call (504) 569-0964.

For information, visit http://www.tasteatthelake.com.

Ninth Ward

PLAYGROUND DEDICATED: Representatives of the National Basketball Retired Players Association will dedicate Oliver Bush Playground, 2500 Caffin Ave., in the Lower Ninth Ward on Saturday. The $2 million makeover began more than a year ago.

Community event and registration for the free youth basketball clinic begins at 2 p.m. Dedication of the new courts with New Orleans city officials, former NBA players and NBRPA President and CEO Arnie D. Fielkow is at 3:30 p.m., and free youth basketball clinics conducted by former NBA players, including New Orleans native Eldridge Recasner, begin at 4 p.m.

Children participating in the clinic must be 8-14 years of age, but everyone is welcome.