Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

Annual Beignet Fest is back in town

Beignet+Fest+attendees+enjoys+festival+eats+on+Saturday%2C+Sept.+23.+A+fully+activated+and+sensory+friendly+Kids+Village+created+by+Children%E2%80%99s+Hospital+New+Orleans+offered+a+one-of-a-kind+experience+for+all+children.
Anna Hummel
Beignet Fest attendees enjoys festival eats on Saturday, Sept. 23. A fully activated and sensory friendly Kids Village created by Children’s Hospital New Orleans offered a one-of-a-kind experience for all children.

The heart of New Orleans was filled with warm pastries and smiles at the return of the annual
Beignet Fest in City Park on Sept. 23, drawing in thousands of food lovers and tourists from
across the nation.

This festival features a variety of vendors, each selling their own unique version of the classic
beignet. The sweet smell of powdered sugar filled the air as locals and visitors treated
themselves to a diverse assortment of beignets.

Sherwood Collins, the event producer of Beignet Fest expressed his excitement in the

expansion of the festival this year. “We have over 20 food vendors, doing 80 different food
items, and over 50 different beignets, there’s just a prith of wonderful things going on,” said
Collins.

While Beignet Fest is all about indulging in delicious foods and celebrating New

Orleans culture, it is also known for its loyalty to supporting the community. This year’s festival was presented by
Children’s Hospital of New Orleans and all proceeds went to the Beignet Fest Foundation.

“Beignet Fest Foundation is a non-profit that we created with Beignet Fest that takes the
proceeds and helps to celebrate, embrace, and enhance the lives of kids with autism and their
families,” Collins said.

Collins stresses the fact that Beignet Fest is a family oriented event, “we want to create an
atmosphere where kids can come out, feel included, feel safe, and have a good time while
enjoying a festival atmosphere and having something really good and fun to eat,” he said.

Every bite of the delicious beignets contributes to a greater cause. The charitable efforts of Beignet fest brings people together with a purpose and entails the positive impact the community strives to make.

Festival-goers and Loyola Law alumni, Darlene Peters and Jeaneen Johnson attended Beignet
Fest this year, expressing their love for the music, atmosphere, and charitable aspects the
festival has to offer.

“I appreciate that they are raising funds for autism in the Children’s Hospital. I’m just excited that we’re here together for a good cause and that the crowd seems to be a good turnout,” said
Peters.

Besides sweet treats and smells, the festival offers local jazz bands to provide music for the New Orleans residents.

Artists featured at this year’s festival included Black Magic Drumline, Imagination Movers, New
Soul Finders featuring Marilyn Barbarin and Marc Stone, Mia Borders, Flow Tribe, and F

lagboy
Giz.

Another highlight of this festival is the culinary creativity displayed by local chefs.
Visitors see everything from savory, seafood-stuffed beignets to sweet, praline-filled pastries.

Favorites amongst visitors this year included the “pear and brie” beignet from The Vintage
NOLA, the “blackberry cloud” beignet from Old School Eat’s, and Loretta’s Authentic Pralines’
famous “crabmeat” beignet.

This celebration of the traditional New Orleans powdered sugar pastry has a way of bringing the
community together and creating a vibrant atmosphere, while also helping local businesses
create a name for themselves.

Preston Wyatt, an employee at Ruby Slipper Cafe said Beignet Fest has always had a positive
impact on their business. “We are a really big family culture, at Ruby Cafe we try to inspir

e a
culture of belonging,” Wyatt said, “We get to meet all kinds of new people and let them know
who we are.”

Through the numerous flavors, rhythmic jazz beats, and generosity of this event, it is evident that Beignet Fest is a true reflection of New Orleans spirit. This celebration of tradition and innovation reminds us how important it is to come together as a community to build a
brighter future for those in need.

As we wrap up another delicious year, we impatiently await for the next c

hapter of this sweet
and a savory journey that is Beignet Fest. Don’t miss out, and mark your calendars for Beignet
Fest in September 2024!

By Kaitlyn Gress, Staff

Last weekend, Beignet Fest returned to the New Orleans Festival Grounds from 10-6 on Saturday, bringing over 50 kinds of delicious beignets with it.
For only $20 a person and free for children 12 and under, Beignet Fest is well worth the price. The cost of beignets at the festival ranged from $5-15, including vegan and gluten-free options.
Guests voted for their favorite beignet in categories such as savory, which included “crawfish and corn beignets” from Any O’Cajun, and sweet, which included “very berry lemon beignets” from Ruby Slipper Cafe.
Vendors also offered other food items such as fries, pasta, gumbo, jambalaya, wings, ice cream, and plenty of drink options. Food could be enjoyed at picnic tables close enough to the stage to hear the various performers.
The performances were family-friendly and kept guests entertained by bringing out special guests and activities. Some musicians offered merch for around $20-25. Guests could also buy handmade creations at the artist’s market, a collection of tents set up in a row on the field.
With vendors selling clothing, paintings, candles, crystals, coasters, postcards, ornaments, and many more, there were plenty of options to choose from. And with all the areas clearly marked, it was easy to find.

Beignet Fest was an overall great success and the large crowds it drew will help the Beignet Fest Foundation continue to do good in our community. Hopefully, it will return next year with even more delicious flavors of beignets.

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About the Contributors
James Hufnagel, Senior Staff Videographer
James Hufnagel is the Senior Staff Videographer for The Maroon. He is a junior Journalism major with a minor in Business Administration. James enjoys spending his time on the basketball court, playing guitar, or in Audubon Park. James can be reached at [email protected].
Laci Barrow, Photo Editor
Laci Barrow currently serves as The Maroon's Photo Editor. Laci is a junior mass communication major focusing on public relations and minoring in marketing. She loves connecting with her community through the art of storytelling. Outside of the Maroon, you can find Laci scoping out spots to take great landscape pictures and weightlifting. For inquiries, reach out to Laci via email at [email protected]
Anna Hummel, Photo Editor
Anna Hummel is excited for her position as Photo Editor. Anna is a senior mass communication major with a concentration in public relations and a minor in business analytics. She is passionate about telling stories through photos. In Anna’s free time she enjoys swimming, reading and art.

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