REVIEW: Bronston’s ‘Walking New Orleans’ a welcome companion

By ALAN SMASON

Walking New Orleans by Barri Bronston (Wilderness Press, 2015) 238 pgs. Photographs by Donna Goldenberg and Barri Bronston. $18.95.

WalkingNOWith an emphasis on being environmentally sensitive and as a means of promoting healthy living alternatives, “Walking New Orleans” by Wilderness Press is the latest in a series of books designed to encourage walking tours of various selected cities.

Former Times-Picayune reporter and current Tulane University assistant director of public relations Barri Bronston was selected from among a field of would-be enthusiasts to design and compose a book about New Orleans neighborhoods that would work well with treks between one and three miles in length.

The entire process took a year for her to cover, much of the time spent writing on weekends or at night.

Among the areas she covers in New Orleans proper are the Garden District, the Warehouse District, Lakeview, Central City, Algiers Point and three separate treks for the French Quarter. She also includes a tour of Lafreniere Park in Metairie and downtown Covington as interesting side trips.

Much care was taken by Bronston to make each walk interesting and challenging, but also to include appropriate rest stops to eat, drink, play or shop. For instance, the Mid-City trek includes stops at Odd Fellows Rest and other “cities of the dead,” burger joint Bud’s Broiler, popular eateries Milkfish and MoPho Restaurants and dessert heaven Angelo Brocato’s as well as Tubby and Coo’s Mid-City Book Shop.

Numerous sidebars cover additional items of interest such as the Sidney and Walda Besthoff Scupture Garden in the section on City Park or Neil Bodenheimer’s top-ranked bar Cure in the section on Freret Street.

Two appendixes offer walks with themes like “Museums” or “Family Fun” as well as specific points of interests associated with various treks. Looking up Stanley Restaurant, for example, will offer the reader “Walk 4,” which begins at Iberville and North Peters Street and ends at Le Petit Theatre du Vieux Carré.

The numerous pictures by Bronston and her out-of-town photographer sister truly enhance the descriptions of each trek. This is an investment in a healthier lifestyle and a compendium of interesting sights in the Crescent City. And what’s not to love? The softbound volume makes it easy to carry and hard not to pick up at under $20.00.

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