crazy facts


Where the Sun Don't Shine

A good laugh was had in 1916 when the Parking Commission (now Parks and Parkways) installed a sundial which was gifted by a citizen, in an uptown park. The requisite of sunshine was all but forgotten when the city surrounded the solar device with a stand of large oleanders. The clueless installers were obviously left in the dark about how a sundial works. The sundial is now fully exposed at St Charles and Toledano -  ZACHARIE PARK

 ben franklin quote



gay goat


Love of Goats and Fear of Gays

Despite having an official name, Tulane Park was known locally as Billy Goat Park or Nanny Goat Park. Why is not strictly known, but it is clear the goats were honored by the naming. In 1965 it was decided WWI vets needed a memorial and the park was renamed "Pershing Square". Turns out the homophobia of the day kicked in since the name also belonged to a notorious park in San Francisco know for gay patronage. An ordinance followed to rename it "Pershing Place". Today the park has almost disappeared into the LSU University Medical Center front lawn, but a doughboy statue remains; no one knows what his orientation was for sure in 1916, but today he is strictly NorthWesterly. - PERSHING PARK


Do Toys Die? Not here...

Though called "The Toy Graveyard", it is anything but. It's a playground where the neighbors bring their children's toys when they've been outgrown for others to enjoy. Now that's a toy story with a happy ending!  -  ALMA PETERS PLAYSPOT

dead toy



The Price of Fame

It's a matter for serious consideration these days when we memorialize our honored citizens. But in 1906 one gentleman figured the easy way to earn fame was to buy it. He offered to pay the city $200 to rename a small uptown park for himself. Clearly his ante was insufficient. The park name remained the same and is there to this day. - AMELIA PARK


Before the Mardi Gras Fountain, there was...

Long before The Guess Who warned "colored lights can hypnotize", New Orleanians were getting their psychedelic fix at a "way out" lakefront park. A Darlington Electric Prismatic Fountain was installed there in 1915 and tripped out the crowd with 9 colors illuminating 1746 streams of water in a multimedia show which often attracted hundreds. - WEST END PARK


fountain freakout



It was twenty years ago today...

225 police involved, 200 women left unconscious - in a word a riot. Yet in 1984 a plaque commemorating the event celebrates its instigators: The "Fab Four". The bronze sign was installed on the 20th anniversary of The Beatles playing in Tad Gormley stadium in 1964 and is currently located under the grandstand. - CITY PARK



The Sky Isn't Falling

Believe what you read? On April Fool's Day 1891 the local paper reported a meteorite landed in New Orleans. What was most probably a huge chunk of Cotton Centennial detritus, mostly iron, became known as a extraterrestrial visitor from then on. Whatever its origins, the rock predates the golf course it is sitting in, and seems destined to outlast it. -  AUDUBON PARK

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