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10 Creative Ways to Spend a Summer Friday in New Orleans

It’s officially Summer…well, maybe not according to seasonal calendar standards, but, based on this heat and the summer camps, we proclaim that summer is here.

One of the biggest perks of summer is summer Fridays. It should actually be illegal to work on Fridays between Memorial Day and Labor Day – the heat and FOMO while friends are on vacation basically cancels out any productivity on a Friday afternoon anyway. Additionally, studies show that early Friday work dismissals may actually boost productivity during the week. Either way, we are here for it. So, to show our support here’s a list of ideas for your Friday afternoon to help you make the best of your time this summer.

NOLA Pool Days

There’s really only one socially acceptable outdoor activity in New Orleans: pool day. Spend the day tanning, melting, drinking, and relaxing at some of New Orleans’s coolest pool scenes. Do a pool tour, and try a new pool club each Friday. Day pool passes are available at the Country Club, Pool Club at the Virgin Hotel New Orleans, The Chloe, Hotel St. Vincent, Drifter, and the Ace ($10 cover for non-hotel guests from Monday through Thursday). You can also book a day pass to lounge by the pool at the NOPSI, Hyatt Centric, or the Windsor Court through Resort Pass.

Van Gogh Exhibit

After experiencing success in cities like New York, Miami, and Atlanta, the acclaimed Van Gogh Exhibit has finally landed in New Orleans. The immersive experience includes a show with the artist’s most famed paintings projected on the walls, coordinated along with music and lights. The exhibition also includes a walk through the artists and artwork through VR and a 3D model.

Sazerac House

The Sazerac House on Canal Street celebrates one of New Orleans’s most iconic drinks, the Sazerac, with a  complimentary tour and tastings in a grand, three-story museum/store.

Vue Orleans

Vue Orleans observation deck atop the Four Seasons hotel offers a unique 360-degree view of New Orleans. The experience also includes an exhibit and a journey through the city’s history through art, music, and food.

Day trip to Mississippi or kick off a beach weekend early

New Orleans may not have a beach, but one of the best things about the city’s geographical location (there aren’t many) is its proximity to an easy beach getaway. Take a day trip to Bay St. Louis or Pass Christian, Mississippi for a day on the beach and some outlet shopping. New Orleanians also love quick weekend getaways to the Florida panhandle – anywhere between Orange Beach and 30-A is worth of a drive. Even the Redneck Riviera is better than no Riviera.

Boozy Friday lunch

Friday lunch is hands down the best meal of the week. Think about it: it can serve as a pre-game to evening plans or lead into a day of drinking and early bedtime (which greatly minimizes the risk of a hangover. Recently opened Saint John in the French Quarter now offers a Friday lunch, while Commander Palace is always a reliable Friday lunch spot offering 25 cent martinis. Or if you are feeling more wine and cheese, The Tasting Room off Magazine is a great place to stop in for a small bite, or a few drinks. 

Tourists in your city

Sometimes it’s easy to overlook that people from all over the world pay to fly to our home to visit and sightsee. Take a Friday afternoon to play tourist in your own city. Visit some of the random museums, wander the quarter, or even take a tour like a ghost tour or NOLA Drag Tour.

Tipitina’s Free Fridays

From May 27th – to September 2nd, Tipitina’s is offering a free concert series on Fridays. The series will feature local favorites like the Stooges Brass Band and Honey Island Swamp Band. The doors open at 8 p.m. every Friday and are free to the public.


In New Orleans, we like to hibernate on a rainy day (those flood waters on random streets are far too dangerous). Take advantage of a rainy day and use it for good – to sleep and watch a new Netflix series.

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