Latest News and Updates


Photos: 2023 Easter Egg Hunt

Kids from around the neighborhood gathered earlier this April on a sunny Sunday afternoon to find over 700 Easter Eggs!

We give a special thanks to Kathryn Mount for organizing the event and to all our members whose dues make these events possible.

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Jacob LuneauPhotos: 2023 Easter Egg Hunt

2023 GDCA Annual Meeting Recap

On Sunday, February 25, The Garden District Civic Association (GDCA) held its annual meeting at Leola’s, with nearly 40 in attendance. Speakers, including GDCA President Justin Kozak, Councilwoman Carolyn Coleman, Public Service Commissioner Davante Lewis, BREC, and CSRS, primarily focused on the neighborhood’s notorious flooding, the potential rezoning of Barracuda Taco Stand, and an update on the University Lakes Project.

Helmed by board member Hance Hughes, the Stop the GD Flooding campaign has had significant momentum in its genesis, having already met with the City of Baton Rouge (City) and initiated a study of our water lines. CES trucks have started running cameras in lines at Park and Tulip and will unclog if necessary. The City plans to survey the lines on Cherokee and Tulip to identify the root cause. “While it’s disheartening that much of our community continues to experience devastation, I’m encouraged that the City has moved swifter than expected,” Hughes said. “We remain vigilant and optimistic that we can come to a sustainable solution.” Everyone is encouraged to send photos of flooding – both past and (potentially) future – to the campaign’s Instagram account.

The concern about the rezoning proposal for the St. Rose lot behind Barracuda Taco Stand is directly connected to our flooding. Currently, the residential dirt lot is being used as unofficial parking for the new outdoor restaurant, and the City recommends rezoning it commercially for a parking lot. Barracuda owner Brett Jones has secured alternative options for parking elsewhere because he, in congruence with the GDCA, agrees that not only will a commercial concrete lot set a bad precedent for future businesses in our walkable community, it will exacerbate our flooding issues. The GDCA has presented an opposition letter to the City and plans to meet with its leaders soon. 

Other updates

Councilwoman Coleman has spoken with Fred Raiford, director of transportation for the City of Baton Rouge, about the neighborhood’s drainage issues and will provide updates following last month’s meeting. She also asked attendees to contact her office for help if they ever have problems with 311.

Commissioner Lewis previewed multiple updates coming to our inbox related to energy and water bills. We can expect a slight increase in our water bills to build up an emergency fund. Also, Entergy plans to add a $5.50 Disaster Ida fee to our accounts for the next 15 years. Finally, he shared that there are intentional efforts from his office to provide alternative energy sources to Entergy for the community.

Reed Richard of BREC and Mark Goodson of CSRS shared that Phase 1 of the University Lakes Project should begin in late Spring. Our neighborhood and adjoining areas can expect minimal delays once the project kicks off. BREC is partnering with the City to develop watersheds and a greenway from Dalrymple to Downtown Baton Rouge.

Get Involved

Water plants – The neighborhood sign at Park Boulevard/Government has been raised in height, and the soil improved. There will soon be new landscaping with native plants, and we need consistent support with its watering. 

Maintain the alleys – Potholes, poor lighting, and overgrown vegetation are the biggest problems in the alley. We ask neighbors to assist with keeping it clean and cut back. Doing so helps with safety and utility services. You can read more about our alleyways and how we can keep them clean and safe. 

Protect the live oaks – Kimberly Coffey and The Live Oak Love Collective have made beautiful gains in getting sections of Park Blvd cleaned up and beautified. We hope to improve the medians on Cherokee/Park and Kleinert/Terrace next, but we need neighbors to pitch in support. 

Contact us at [email protected] to volunteer and learn more ways you can get involved in our community.

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Jacob Luneau2023 GDCA Annual Meeting Recap

Stop the Garden District Flooding Update

What we learned at City Hall?

Members of GDCA Drainage Committee and Garden District residents met with Fred Raiford, EBR Director of the Department of Transportation and Drainage, and the Stormwater Master Plan project team February 16, 2022 at City Hall. They are aware and acknowledge that there are problems with drainage and flooding in the Garden District. According to engineers, the drainage system models show that the neighborhood should not be experiencing problems if our system is functioning properly. Therefore, they have reason to believe that there might be a localized problem in the subsurface drainage system.

Step One is to identify the unknown problem(s)

The City is sending their subcontractor, CES, to survey the subsurface drainage lines on Cherokee and Tulip to identify the problem. CES trucks have been seen in the area. If lines are clogged, they plan to unclog them. If there is no infrastructure problem identified, the city has agreed to pay the funding to HNTB engineers to design the solution. As of today, we have not heard from the City and HNTB on what has been discovered during the survey or identification of the problem.

If the problem requires infrastructure work, there is no funding for the construction of the solution. Funding would come from a grant; the application is due by the end of May. Grant qualification requires information on the homes that have experienced property damage.



If you or someone you know has experienced flooding in the Garden District, please complete the Stop the Garden District from Flooding: Photo/Doc Submission form and submit photos. If you have trouble uploading your photos/videos because of the size, please email a link to [email protected]. The City needs this information to apply for funding to fix the problem!


Follow us on Instagram @StoptheGDFlooding. Share your photos of flooding so your story is heard.


  • Help determine what is happening. Get active if there are problems on your block.
  • Do NOT blow leaves and grass clippings in the street or drains.
  • Bag leaves and grass debris.
  • Ask your neighbors and their lawn service providers to stop blowing leaves and grass clippings in the street.
  • Pick up litter.


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Claire PittmanStop the Garden District Flooding Update

December/January Crime Update

Here’s the most recent update from Mike and our police officer that monitors the neighborhood, Corporal Seth Gauthier:

The Garden District experienced five significant security incidents in the month of December.

  • Vehicle Theft on Olive. The vehicle was left unsecured with the keys inside.
  • Burglary of a dwelling on Broussard. The homeowner was present at the time.
  • Burglary of a dwelling on Park. No other pertinent information is available.
  • Vehicle Burglary on Drehr. Vehicle was unsecured but nothing was taken.
  • Vehicle Burglary on Olive. Vehicle was unsecured and a pistol was taken.

There were multiple other false alarm calls along with suspicious incidents.

Of course, it goes without saying that valuables should not be left unsecured—especially firearms. Criminals love to “cruise” the neighborhood and pull on door handles in search of easy crimes of opportunity. If a purse or a firearm or some other valuable item is visible, they’re going to work a lot harder to steal it.

Also, report street light outages and other safety issues through the Red Stick Ready website or app. Stay safe! 

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Jacob LuneauDecember/January Crime Update

2023 GDCA Annual Events

Get ready for 2023 around the Garden District. In line with our mission to build community, we have another exciting year of events planned for our friends and neighbors. We’ll kick off the year at our Annual Meeting in just a few weeks, and we’ll announce those details as soon as we finalize the date and location.

Check out the dates for the other upcoming events and mark your calendars.

GDCA Annual Public Meeting
Sunday, February 26th

Easter Egg Hunt
Sunday, April 2nd

Crawfish Boil
Sunday, April 30th

Fall Picnic
Sunday, October 1st

Champagne Stroll
Sunday, October 22nd

Christmas Light Contest Judging
Thursday, December 14th

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Jacob Luneau2023 GDCA Annual Events

Live Oak Love in 2023

We’re looking for our next block to target for tree maintenance! The optimal block would have one or more households that care enough about this initiative that they’d be willing to donate funds for a couple of trees. At the end of 2022, we nearly had a successful fundraising campaign for a block in the GD, but we didn’t quite meet our goal. So we’ll keep trying! If you know of a block that might have this level of interest, please let us know!

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Jacob LuneauLive Oak Love in 2023

WINNERS of Holiday Lighting Contest


This year, you may have seen your GDCA board members out judging Christmas lights on a Baton Rouge Pedal Pub. This was the first time we held the judging in this manner, and we have discussed opening this up to the larger Garden District neighborhood next year because it was so much fun! These are kid friendly, and can negotiate a group rate for rides.

Winners of the contest received gift cards for two free rides, and the one-hour Pedal Pub ride for the judging was generously donated by Baton Rouge Pedal Pub. We hope that involving more of the neighbors in this annual event will get more of our neighbors to put up lights and get involved in the spirit of the holidays!

Your Garden District board rode up and down every street and toiled over which houses were the best. It was a hard decision, but here are the WINNERS! Congratulations!!!

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Claire PittmanWINNERS of Holiday Lighting Contest
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Pop! Fizz! GDCA Champagne Stroll 2022

Thank you to everyone who joined us or hosted us during the 2022 Pop Fizz Champagne Stroll! It was a resounding success, and it looks like everyone had a great time! We’d like to extend a special thanks to our guide, Captain Day, who was our flight director throughout the evening! Check out the photos below from this year’s event, and please reach out if you’re interested in helping or hosting next year!

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AshleyPop! Fizz! GDCA Champagne Stroll 2022
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Get Ready for the GDCA Christmas Light Contest!

Garden District Christmas Light Contest
Thursday, December 15th, 5:00 – 6:00 p.m.
The GDCA Board will be riding through the neighborhood to judge the best holiday lights in the neighborhood. We accept bribes and anything spiked! Awards will be announced in the December Newsletter.

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AshleyGet Ready for the GDCA Christmas Light Contest!

New Sponsor Spotlight

The GDCA would like you to meet one of your new neighbors, Mr. Joe Astone. See the Q+A below to learn more about his new printing business. 

How long has your business been in the Garden District/Mid-City and/or the Baton Rouge area?
Since its inception in June 2022.

What is your background?
After getting both an undergrad (ISDS) and graduate degree (Finance) from LSU, I have had a 22 year career in Finance/Financial Information Systems that has made me dig into the left side of my brain a lot. This business is a departure in exploring the right side, and I couldn’t be happier.

How did the idea or concept for your business come about?  
I have a friend in Key West, FL, who is involved in a restaurant group and said they buy an insane amount of clothing to sell, and they wouldn’t care who they bought it from, as long as it is quality.  I started thinking about it, and I loved the idea of helping promote other businesses that way.  Whether it be the most-serious of medical logo or a conceptual piece of art reminiscent of Mad Magazine, I want to see how it looks on a shirt, hat, pants, shoes, or anything else.

What is unique about your business?  
My business is all about helping people, and I actually mean it.  One of my first prints was the adoption day shirt for a little 9 year old girl I know.  Coming from a day job that can be cold, calculating, and DRAINING, doing something like that makes me feel like a million bucks.  I also have a machine that is intended to make the most-intricate shirt designs with as many colors and details as you want.  This is the lesser-common method, but also the most exciting.

What goods or services does your business provide?
I do Direct-to-Garment printing as well as embroidery and wide-format printing.  I can do small-batch shirts, and therefore I can service small- to medium-sized businesses at lower cost than national houses.  I offer graphic art through a partner, so that is available as well.

How many employees do you have?
It’s me and me alone right now.  Anyone who has one of my items literally has a hand-made garment!

Do you have a targeted clientele?
Small- and medium-sized businesses, non-profits, and club organizations.  I can even embroider on cleats!

What do you use to promote/advertise your business?  Please provide website address, etc. for any social media platforms that are utilized.
My business is brand new, and I haven’t gotten into my promotion/advertising yet, but an update could soon follow!! is going to be the URL but it has not been made public as of this writing.  I am also on Instagram: @CavPrintShop

Do you have seasonal promotions/offers? What are they?
I will be doing a 12.25% off sale this December.

Is your company involved in any community activities?
I will be, and I can’t wait!!  I grew up playing soccer and would love to get into that community, as sports were the haven I had as a child–especially when I needed to run out that teen angst we all know we went through.

Is there anything else you would like for your neighbors to know?  
Is NOW an appropriate time to remind all the “whippersnappers” to stay off my lawn??

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AshleyNew Sponsor Spotlight