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Sharon Litwin
Sharon Litwin is president of Partnership for Action (PFA) a non-profit organization created in 1997 by a diverse group of women for the benefit of the City of New Orleans. She is co-founder of NolaVie, a new website dedicated to covering and promoting the full breadth of New Orleans’ unique culture. NolaVie is a project of PFA.

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Renee Peck
Renee Peck spent three-plus decades working as a feature editor and reporter for The New Orleans Times-Picayune, covering everything from food to TV to home and garden.

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Visit NolaVie

Project Blog: NolaVie

New Orleans’ vibrant culture takes center stage with NolaVie, an unusual public/private partnership to cover arts and culture and publish it on Nola.com, the Times-Picayune newspaper’s website. NolaVie will be populated by experienced journalists and members of various cultural organizations and be run by a local businesswoman and former editors and writers at the newspaper.

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Monday, March 28, 2011

We’ve got it - and have been corralling writers like crazy since launching on Feb. 21. The most gratifying aspect of NolaVie is that so many people are jumping on board.

Contributors’ meetings these days range from 10 to 25 people, all excited about story ideas that capture the unique and lively culture and arts scene in New Orleans.

But let’s back up. Here’s the news in a more “legacy journalism” format.

In February, NolaVie went live, both at www.nolavie.com and at www.nola.com/nolavie, the latter as a part of partner Nola.com’s major New Orleans website. Banner home-page billing in week one, coupled with a story in the feature section of The Times-Picayune, drew first-time readers in the thousands. We were off to a grand start.

In the past month, we:

  • Have posted from two to five original stories daily, ranging from a dawn session at the race track to profiles of local entrepreneurs to restaurant snapshots and a play monologue.
  • Among our most popular stories to date: A regular column on senior living by the former Living Section editor of The Times-Picayune (a spry 75), a short story and photo gallery on Barkus, the Mardi Gras parade for dogs; a piece about a Rouse’s grocery store commercial that featured the St. Augustine Marching 100 high-school band; an interview with a sociologist about why Mardi Gras forms the social and economic base of the culture.
  • Held our first event, a parade party at the Bridge Lounge, with Nola Brewing (free) beer and a sign-up sheet for our soon-to-come newsletter. (Pix of the event ran in the Times-Picayune Big Easy page)
  • Held our second event, a film screening of a Les Blank movie about New Orleans, at a local art center called Fair Folks and a Goat.
  • Covered New Orleans Entrepreneur Week in depth, an event that is attracting national attention in just its third year.
  • Signed up two new founding partners, the New Orleans Opera Association and New Orleans Museum of Art (bringing the total to eight so far)
  • Launched a Creative Writing Contest, soliciting fiction, short non-fiction and poetry about New Orleans; winners get cash prizes and their works will be read at an event in April at Octavia Books, a well-known local bookstore.

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   • Posted by Renee Peck on 03/28 at 04:16 PM