Editor’s Note: The original story ran May 24, 2018. We updated it with this year’s Memorial Day events.
While this Memorial Day weekend might be unusually hot, with highs in the 90s, you won’t lack places to cool off—be they pool parties or music festivals.
If you’re looking for a holiday weekend escape, we have a map for 13 small towns near New Orleans and a map of architecturally stunning lodgings along the Gulf Coast. And if you’re making Memorial Day weekend a staycation in New Orleans, explore the city with our Spring Pocket Guide or take the kids on a city-wide adventure.
Read on for more events happening in New Orleans during Memorial Day weekend.
On Friday, May 24, the Treme 7th Ward Cultural District will lead a walking tour and a community pub crawl in the Treme and 7th Ward neighborhoods. The tours cover the developments of the districts and the social impact of the Baby Dolls, which is a unique New Orleans masking tradition that has ties to the two neighborhoods. For details on admission for these events, visit the official Treme 7th Ward Cultural District website.
On Saturday, May 25, The Cultural District will host its “Under the Bridge” music festival between Saint Ann to Saint Phillips. Located under the South Claiborne Avenue overpass, the free celebration will have local food and art vendors and performing artists.
The 46th annual Greek Festival takes place in New Orleans on Bayou St. John. After a positive reception to last year’s extended schedule, Greek Festival organizers will open the festival with discounted admission a day early—on Thursday, May 23, when entry costs $5. At other times, entrance to the festival costs $8 per person. Admission is free for children age 12 and under.
The Greek Festival will have art and food vendors, a climbing wall, Hellenic dance performances, a cooking demonstration, and a tours of the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral. If you wear a “tasteful and tightly tied toga” on Sunday, you’ll get free admission.
The National WWII Museum will host a series of events to commemorate service members. Memorial Day events are free for service members, but all other individuals must pay regular admission to attend. Regular admission still applies to see the museum exhibits during the holiday weekend.
At 10:30 a.m. Saturday, May 27, the museum holds a concert with a performance by the U.S. Marine Forces Reserve Band at the U.S. Freedom Pavilion. From 11 a.m. to noon, a commemoration ceremony takes place. A national moment of silence will be held at the pavilion at 3 p.m.
The dulcimer-voiced Nickelodeon alum takes the stage at the Smoothie King Center at 8 p.m. Saturday, May 25. Expect hits like “God is a Woman” and “No Tears Left to Cry,” impressive vocal pyrotechnics thanks to Grande’s four-octave range, and plenty of high ponytails at the New Orleans stop of the 42-city tour, which Variety magazine described as “giddy, splendorous, beautifully designed, expertly performed and almost bit avant-garde in its staging.”
Bike Easy hosts a free bike second line that kicks off from City Park at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 26. Led by Egg Yolk Jubilee, the 10-mile route winds past Doerr Furniture and Magnolia Yoga Studio before ending at Second Line Brewing. Bike Easy members get a free T-shirt.