Thursday, November 15, 2012

NOLA Indie Film Makers making the film fest rounds

Everyone by now is aware of the film industry in New Orleans.  We see the sets, road closures and of course, we see the actual product...on screen and on our TV sets.  It's a great thing.

But what we don't see is the small independent film makers toiling away at a script or story line, and then producing a film or web series, usually on a micro-budget.  Well not usually, absolutely on a micro-thin budget.  Not a shoe-string budget, a dental-floss-thin budget. 

Against all odds, these small independent "film-prenuers" create some amazing work.  And a group of local film makers are doing just that.  The film is Trailer Park Jesus, produced by Backyard Shed Films, LLC, and it has been making the rounds on the national film fest scene.  TPJ has taken home quite a few awards in the process, from festivals ranging from Chicago, Nevada, Philly, Ohio, New York and many more.  Too many to list here, so check them out on their site. 

This spin off affect of the film industry needs more attention. Yes, we have film festivals here and across the region, but the interaction with a broader audience is what is lacking. Fortunately there are cinemas and screenings of these films, in fact today at 4:30 is the last day to see TPJ at the Chalmette Movies.  Show your support and go see a local indie film.

Ok, so we have some great local film-preneurs,(love that term), so what's the next step? Well as in any business or product launch, you keep plugging and get your product in front of as many people as possible.  We may be lacking in a major film distribution network here in the city, but one thing we are not lacking is talent.  Indie film making is as entrepreneurial as any other endeavor, and when you hit a wall and need to break through, you regroup, retool and relaunch.  That is my hope for all local film makers.

So do your part and check out TPJ. 

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Vacant Land in Metairie? It's a needle in a haystack scenario

Anyone looking for vacant land in Metairie to build a commercial building knows that it is a needle in a haystack challenge.

A quick drive down any major thoroughfare in the area will NOT result in a list of vacant sites that you can easily select from.  And of the available sites, many permitting and zoning challenges exist that create even more road blocks to development. 

Vacant land is also hidden or disguised, usually with older obsolete buildings that need to come down in order to uncover the vacant land.  Given the fact that most owners of these properties know the value of their "land", and that it currently provides income to them, it makes it all the more difficult to reach a price that is acceptable to both parties.

So what is a developer to do?

First, in any development project, there needs to be a driver.  Fortunately, many retailers and companies see the New Orleans and south shore market as a very attractive place to locate.  The population, traffic and demographic numbers create the perfect mix of business elements to make money.

In retail specifically, this means a visible, well traveled, major thoroughfare location that will provide convenience and accessibility to the customer they are trying to reach.  Finding that perfect site is the needle in the haystack scenario.  Although in the case of the south shore, its a very small haystack.  There are only a handful of major thoroughfares that meet the retailers criteria. 

Consider that in East Jefferson there is only one interstate(I-10), only one major east/west State Highway(Hwy 61-Airline Drive) and only one major east/west retail or commercially zoned corridor(Veterans Mem. Blvd.).  And north/south roadways are even more limited with only one major thoroughfare connecting I-10 to the westbank(Clearview Parkway).

So finding a 28,420 sf site, located across from a major grocery store, at a traffic light, with 90k cars per day is a rare find. But it does exist.  You can find it here.

The Truth About Office Leasing

Office Leasing:  Now there's a sexy topic.  However, if you are in business, it is the essence of your daily environment. 

The truth about office leasing first depends upon your company’s individual need. The truth is most companies, large or small; do not know HOW to assess their needs.

The first step is to know what business you are in. Are attorneys in the "legal" business or are they in the problem solving business? If so, what type of problems are they solving, and what type of people have those problems, and where are they located?

Are your customers downtown, uptown, suburbs, east bank, west bank?

Another assessment is the need for visibility and accessibility. Are your clients better served navigating a parking garage, then an elevator bank, just to see the incredible view from your office? Or is the view just for you.

Do you need visibility or image space?

One consideration that many companies never consider is the type of lease they are entering into. If an owner provides money for tenant improvements, they are in essence lending you money to improve your space. And with a loan comes repayment terms and provisions that WILL end up in legal proceedings to collect a debt in event there is a default. 

Which type of lease is right for your operations?  A gross lease may be the route to go.  It may be more expensive, but it is the least cumbersome on your operations since you pay one rent payment which covers all utilities, maintenance, janitorial, etc.  Having a maintenance staff is better than wasting your time trying to get stains out of a carpet. 

And size does matter.  The days of wasted office space are over.  The average 5,000sf office can be reduced down to 1,500 sf.  There is no longer the need for mail rooms, copy rooms, larger server rooms, etc.  Collaboration functionality and efficiency is built in to most office furniture and systems reducing the need for multiple conference rooms.  And of course technology has reduced the need for many office functions, such as filing systems and has increased the remote capabilities of most businesses.  All of these advances continue to reduce the square footage needed to operate most businesses.

So the truth is.....with an honest analysis of your operations coupled with the insight of a commercial real estate professional, you can significantly improve your effectiveness and reduce hard cost  in one move, putting your business on firm ground for the future.  If you would like that insight and analysis, please contact us today to discuss your situation. 

If you need space in east jefferson, go to

Thursday, September 20, 2012

View from the helipad at Exchange Centre

What an opportunity I had last night to view the city from atop the Exchange Centre building. It was a great view coupled with great weather.  But the feeling of looking over the city and knowing that economic activity and change is taking place every where you look, was very comforting. The visual gave you a sense that things are getting better and we are growing, and its just not hype.  Seeing cranes in the air from the VA project was one of the most inspiring sights. To see development and progress from that vantage point can alter your perception of the city.

You have to recognize that this view(right) of Rampart Street will be changed forever once South Market District opens. It has already changed with Rouses and others. I remember vividly the proposals after the storm for this area. Every city council meeting had a new developer with great looking building proposed for various sites, and they all were going to transform the skyline. Well, in all fairness, it does take a while to transform a skyline. So the fact that we are just now seeing these changes, within 7 years of the storm, is actually a remarkable achievement. In order to drastically change a skyline, I would expect at least a decade or more.  But looking down O'Keefe from Poydras, you can see evidence of those changes. The Exchange Centre building signage is visible and the pedestrian activity at Poydras and O'Keefe is robust.

So when the news is...well...the news, do yourself a favor and get on top of a building and look at the city from a different perspective.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Solar???? hmmm, starting to sound good

Power outages are making a good case for solar power. Just talked with a solar company rep and was given some good tips.

The "lease" plan is still dependent upon the grid. If you lose power from the grid, the panels and equipment shut off because they will put power back into downed lines.

The battery storgage type of systems seem the most logical and practical. This option may seem to be cost prohibited, however, I feel that a choice to go solar is a larger committment to removing your self from the dependancy of the utility company rather than saving a few dollars.

If you weren't dependent on entergy, you would be enjoying your Labor Day, and the previous 5 days, in the a/c, at home, doing laundry and cooking.

But do we care enough? My guess is that we will be back to normal in a couple of days and not even remeber that the lights went out. Our collective short term memory will keep us sucking on the power line for light and life, like a herd of cattle.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Retail makes a come back in Algiers

The property formaly known as Village Aurora is now being transformed into Algiers Plaza, and finally brining back retail to the Algiers market. Joe Mann describes the turning points that got this proposed project off the ground.

Economic Development and Commerce Merge

Chris Kane with the Algiers Economic Development Foundation discusses the changes that the city, state and federal government has made that has encouraged new economic development such as Algiers Plaza.

For a list of bank-owned properties for sale, email a request to

How do you convince retailers to come to a market????….Brokers

And now......for something totally different, we have a call-in from a local comedy act who is bringing something new to the New Orleans comedy scene. British humor??? Clean comedy??? The call throws the host off, now that was funny!

Behind every great retailers is a great broker. Commercial real estate brokers are the best salesforce of New Orleans, we sell it and know it, better than anyone. Of course, our local economic developers do the same and our guest Joe Mann and Chris Kane discuss how its done.

The rebirth of a Legend-Lakewood Golf

One of the most popular golf courses in the city makes a come back. This project demonstrates how to turn around a golf course and create economic development by bringing back a legend. This course was a former PGA Tour stop and is set to become a resort and convention destination. Being only 5 mins from downtown, this property is poised to become a jewel in the redevelopment of the city.

For a list of bank-owned properties for sale, email a request to

Monday, August 6, 2012

Louisiana Film History Dates Back to…?????

How far back does the film industry date back to? Was New Orleans the first to have an indoor movie theater?

Why does our film history matter? How can we use it? Where was the last scene in Easy Rider filmed?

Ed and Susan Poole with Global Cinema Research discusses all of this and more. Global Cinema Research is an international company that is located in Gretna, LA and provides research and valuation services to film industry clients across the globe. and

Bad school lunch is a thing of the past

Remember your school's cafeteria and lunches. The frozen pizzas, meatloaf surprise, and of course.....Sloppy Joe's. The lunch lady may have changed her ways, now she cooks with real food and its healthy!!! Hopefully, they still wear the hair nets though. (yes, we play the Adam Sandler Lunch Lady song)

A new company has entered the school lunch market and will be serving up healthy and fresh meals for students, not only for the nutrional benefits, but to provide a better learning environment. And creating 50 new jobs in the process.

Revolution Foods is revolutionizing the school lunch industry. Hear their start up story and how New Orleans is in the early stage of this food revolution.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The Brands of Ballard

Hear Ballard Hospitality CEO, Scott Ballard, discuss their brands and concepts.

PJ's Coffee & Tea Company
WOW Cafe' and Wingery
New Orleans Roast Coffee
Board House Subs

For a list of bank owned properties, email a request to

Bringing a New Orleans Brand Back Home

Hear PJ's Coffee back story. Started in New Orleans, moved to Atlanta, and now back home in New Orleans.

Where is the farest PJ's location?

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For a list of bank owned properties, email a request to

The background of an entrepreneur

Where did the Ballard entrepreneurial spirit and work ethic come from?

Hear the Gene Simmons story.....yes, THE Gene Simmons.

Scott Ballard discusses how to start a franchise, growth strategy and the keys to how they developed WOW Cafe', PJ's Coffee, Board House Subs and other great entrepreneurial advice.

We also take a walk down memory lane with a great New Orleans retail story

It takes guts….

The true spirit of an back. You will not see how our LA restaurants give, but they do, they just don't advertise it.

Why are our business owners different in New Orleans and LA? The culture here...."it’s very unique to learn to how to get along with anybody".

The Louisiana Hospitality Foundation is a philanthropic organization that gives back on a continual basis.

New Tenant Mix for RiverWalk

Written by Leslie Turk
Thursday, July 26, 2012

The Howard Hughes Corporation announced Thursday plans for the redevelopment of Riverwalk Marketplace into an upscale outlet center —The Outlet Collection at Riverwalk.

Construction will begin later this year, with an expected reopening in late 2013.

Most of the three-level mall's tenants are local shop owners selling New Orleans themed products to tourists and conventioneers, a change prompted by the departure of several national retailers, like Victoria's Secret and Abercrombie and Fitch, after Hurricane Katrina.

Opened in 1986 on property that had been used for the 1984 World's Fair, the Riverwalk is located in New Orleans Central Business District, directly adjacent to the 1,600-room Hilton Riverside Hotel and New Orleans Convention Center.

According to New Orleans CityBusiness, General Growth Properties, the Riverwalk’s former owner, sold the mall to Hughes Corp., a spinoff company, in late 2010 as a part of a bankruptcy restructuring plan.

“Our redevelopment and repositioning of this storied riverfront property will bring well-known, popular retail and entertainment establishments, many which will be new to New Orleans,” Grant Herlitz, president of The Howard Hughes Corp said in announcing the investment. “Beyond the impact of these compelling options for locals and tourists, we are pleased to be part of the continued revitalization of New Orleans given the many benefits this development will represent to the city.”

Hughes Corp., which will expand its footprint by about 50,000 square feet to an approximate total of 250,000 square feet, said the center will showcase top national retailers with established outlet stores as well as some local retail, dining and entertainment options.

Along with being the nation’s first outlet center located in a downtown setting, many of the retail establishments will be the first location in Louisiana, New Orleans and the Gulf region for their respective brands, the company said.

Long underserved in the retail sector, New Orleans has approximately 30 pecent less square feet of retail per capita than the national average. Additionally, Hughes Corp. noted the mall is in need of revitalization, as it has not been updated in any significant way by previous owners since its grand opening in 1986.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

NOLA - Home town of Col. Lenny Richoux

Col. Lenny Richoux, Commander, 6th Air Mobility Wing, MacDill Air Force Base, Fla., discusses his home town, New Orleans.

Click here for Col. Richoux's Bio


Military Leadership Lessons

Leadership in the Air Force is a skill that is vetted through a rigorous process; you either perform or get out of the way. Col. Lenny Richoux makes some military leadership comparisons to the private sector. Hear his inside perspective.

Every Job Matters

We discuss Col. Lenny Richoux his new favorite band: Peace of Cake ( Hear his inspiring stories of how the military used front line soldiers, airmen and marines to create ideas for solving combat problems and how the public sector can use these strategies.

Every job matters, every idea matters. No matter what job you are in; that is the most important job you will have in your life”, hear why.

The Military Life-is it a beach?

Military families move around alot, hear some insight on the affects of living globally from the family themselves.

How many moves have you made? How many continents have you lived on? Moving across the street is hard, what is it like to move across the ocean?

This segment is brought to you by:


Thursday, June 28, 2012

New sounds of today influnced by the past

Liquid Peace Revolution details their influnces and their new sound. Its more than music, its a revolution.
Great band, with a great sense of humor and a driving desire to bring their sound and message to global audience.  And the sound?   It's called ROCK AND ROLL!!!!!!

Is it time to buy foreclosed properties?

Click here to email your request for a list of bank-owned properties

This podcast brought to you by:

How small is New Orleans?: An on air shocker

Kyle and Evan are surprised by a past gig.   And William is a dangerous man.
Hear how the band stays motivated and how they are building a larger audience and their global plans for the future.
See Liquid Peace Revolution, Saturday night, June 30, House of Blues

What will technology replace next?

Oh yeah, we are talking tech. If the internet and technology is replacing traditional industries, which one is next? This is not a new topic, but yet we are suprised when it actually affects us, like losing our daily newspaper.

Hear local technology professionals discuss trends in VOIP, data services and disaster planning.

Woody Valls-RingStreet- 504-905-2351

Clayton Mouney - F1 Solutions -

Which businesses are affected by technology?

Remote employees, telecommuting, cloud computing, all affect your real estate needs and other core cost. Which businesses are being affected??? Duh, guess

Hear local technology professionals discuss trends in VOIP, data services and disaster planning.

Woody Valls-RingStreet- 504-905-2351
Clayton Mouney - F1 Solutions -

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Supper and Substance

Jason Angelette discusses the Willwoods Community and the Supper and Substance event on July 20, 2012.  For more info or tickets go to or call Jason at 830-3716

The Start Up of Peace of Cake

The start up story of the band told by the members. Great story of how this band affected one couple who had not danced in years, great story, its a must hear.

Music and Marriage Therapy

Peace of Cake members, Lindsey Piatolly, Ronnie Richoux, Patrick Rosenow discuss their music. Ellen Rosenow sings Adele's Rolling in the Deep.

Willwoods Community was started by a small group of couples in 1978 as a way to give back, 30 years later it is a vibrant and successful non-profit doing its part to Flip This City.

Some marriage therapy took place on the show, intentionally?? suconsciously??? hmmm?

Can’t Help Falling in Love with You

Keeping 8 people focused....its possible. NO playing by ear!

Upcoming shows for Peace of Cake
St. Joseph Abbey - June 23, 2012
St. Dominics 2nd Annual Supper and Substance - August 25, 2012
Fleur-De-Fall, Mary Queen of Peace - November 10, 2012

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Fulton Street - a little something the 1984 worlds fair left behind

Fulton Street has finally come into its own and the economic development predicted has finally happened. But, since 1902, one business has always called Fulton Street home. Hear how one entrepreneur took the risk on Fulton Street before any one else and how it is paying off.

Turning the Convention Center on its side

The New Orleans Convention Center is the largest continual convention center in the US. It is also the longest. Hear how the redesign and construction already underway is changing how the center is viewed from the Poydras Street side. The warehouse look is going away and being replaced with a new entrance that will change the preception of the convention center for large convetions yet to come. Board member Jim Besselman discusses the changes and shares some entrepreneurial insight from his own experiences.

Young artist on her second fund raising album

Most musicians, song writers and vocal artist dream of making that first album. One young local singer/songwriter has not only reached that goal, she is on to her second album, but with a twist. Her albums are rasing money for causes that are near and dear to her. Hear her story of how she took a desire to help out after a major castastrophe and began this journey which is now helping out another local cause that is special to her, pediatric brain cancer. Oh, forgot to mention one thing........she is in 6th grade.

to buy CD email

The Cure Starts Now LA website

Local film maker making it happen

John Dean Alphone describes the difference between funding a film and buying a car, the cost are less to buy the car, but the reward is greater by making the film.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Here’s an Idea……let’s start a music festival

If you have ever had the idea, hey, this would be a great place for a music festival....then you want to hear how Jared Zeller took that idea and made it a reality. Now in its 7th year, Bayou Boogaloo is making a significant impact on the festival scene and an even larger impact on the economic and social fabric of the Mid-City/Bayou St. John area it calls home.

Bayou Boogaloo Effecting Change-how its done

Jared Zeller describes how Bayou Boogaloo and The Mothership Foundation is effecting change in Mid-City and the city as a whole. Mid-city is a hot market, Jared discusses recent activity and what Mid-City needs going forward, and its not much because the Mid-City areas has accomplished a lot since and before the storm.

Below Sea Level - A New Orleans Sit Com

Mike Dardant describes the unique characters behind Below Sea Level.
Can you make a sit com with no budget? Apparantley so. The screeing of the second season is May 17th, 7:30, The Hooka Cafe, 309 Decatur St.
And yes, Mimes really do talk.

National Champion…..of Canada

Mike Dardant is very diverse in his talents. He recently traveled to New York and Canada displaying his magic talents, and still finds time to premier his sit com, Below Sea Level. The screening of Below Sea Level is May 17, 2012, 7:30, @ The Hooka Cafe, 309 Decatur St.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

It's Magic

If you are like me, the last thing you want to do is clean your home or office.  Magic One Services can make your commercial or residential property Magic.   The cleanliness of your home or office is a direct reflection of you and your business. 

Using a professional service company like Magic One Services can give you the security that your customers, clients and friends always see you and your business in a professional and clean environment.

Whether on the North Shore, South Shore, East Bank, West Bank or the surrounding areas, Call them today to learn how their services can help you.  (504-872-9493)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

What it takes from the City of New Orleans to put on a Bicentennial event

The City of New Orleans does it again, hosting the kick off event for the bicentennial events commemorating the War of 1812.

Sailing in New Orleans

Bill Armstrong with Operation Sail describes the ships and a touching monent as one ship came into the Port of New Orleans.
Do we have  "sailing" industry here?  Is there room for growth?

Louisiana History 101

Get a lesson in Louisiana History and New Orleans historical significance in the conflict of the War of 1812

The Tall Ships are here, kicking off a 3 yr commeration of the War of 1812

Hear the Chairman of Operation Sail, Jose Fuentes discuss the events of NOLA Navy Week.  OpSail is the organization responsible for bringing the tall ships to New Orleans.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Need to fund your film? Making The Deal seminar this Saturday

Ashley Charbonnet with New Orleans Video Access Center (NOVAC) discusses the upcoming seminar, Making The Deal, and learn how to get your film funded.

Chris Brown with the St Bernard Office of Film and TV discusses the impact of Hollywood South on St. Bernard Parish.  You will be surprised to hear the movies and shows that utilize St. Bernard and its scenery.

If your browser does not support the podcast player above, you can Listen to this episode

Insight and advice from NOLA flim and tv professionals

Ashley Charbonnet and Chris Brown are involved in the daily work of Hollywood South.  Listen to what is happening in area and they share their work and experiences of Hollywood South.

If you browser does not support the podcast player above, you can Listen to this episodehere

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Flow Tribe…..’nuf said

Hear the start up story of Flow Tribe from K. C. O'Rorke.

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Keeping it funky in the music biz

K. C. O'Rorke shares insight on touring, recording and remaining true to your inner funk.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Limos....not just for prom anymore

Limos are not just for special occasions anymore, they are a necessary means of transportation for any event. There is a reason the famous and fabulous take a limo, its convenient, reliable and of course, luxurious transportation.  But the main reason is its safe. Its the safe way to enjoy the events and festivities our city has to offer.

Call Sugar Ray Limos at (504) 278-1863, or visit the site to see this incredible limousine.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Give It Time-great lyrics

Give it time, a change in the weather might do you good.

Who is Eric Lindell? song writer, guitarist, independent artist

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Influenced by New Orleans

Hear how Eric met up with some of the great New Orleans musicians and learned what the New Orleans sound was all about.

Best mardi gras story ever, a must hear!

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Ins and outs of the music biz

The music biz = work
Eric Lindell: don't wait around, just do it.
He makes albums from what is going on in his life during the week.
Songs in the key of life.

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Great music stories

How to sell that first album: pre-sell on line to raise the funds for the hard copies.
Eric Lindell's stories from the road

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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Inside Fashion Week NOLA 2012

Hear the start up story of how Tracee Dundas started Fashion Week NOLA while surfing the web.

Fashion Week NOLA starts March 21-25, 2012

Fashion Week Nola from Kevin Hughes on Vimeo.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

New Orleans Entrepreneur Week in full swing

Hear about all of the activity that is taking place in the city this week.

Major companies such Google,, and many, many others are here, in New Orleans, for Entrepreneur Week. Just to make sure you got that, they are not in Silicon Valley, not in New York, or Austin, they are here, entrepreneurs and businesses from all over the country, and nay I say, the world, are here for the Entrepreneur Week 2012. WOW.

Listen in and hear what's going on. And get a free discount code for tickets to the Big Idea on Friday.

Bryan Batt, Actor, Author, Designer

Locally born, nationally known. Hear the beginings of how Bryan got started in the business of show business.

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The Business of Style and Design

Bryan discusses his entrepreneurship side. Hear how he started Hazelnut and how he started writing his books. Great start-up stories.
Life is an "and" proposition, not an "or" proposition. Bryan believes you can do "this" and "that". If you have interest and passion, you have to follow them.

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Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Advice from an experienced Actor

Good and surprising advice from an experienced actor.
Hear Bryan's outlook our New Orleans' theater industry.

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Thursday, March 8, 2012

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

New Orleans girl playing on the national level

Annie Clements tells her story of playing music in New Orleans and then landing a gig with Sugarland.