GiveNOLA Day 2016 - Playhouse District

GiveNOLA Day 2016 will begin at 12:00:01 AM on May 3 and will end at 11:59:59 PM. This year, DiscoveryFEST is offering a very exciting raffle item - a party! For every $20 donated to DiscoveryFEST, that donor will receive one entry into our raffle.


The party prize, which we have dubbed the Playhouse District, will consist of a DiscoveryFEST party for the winner and 30 of his or her closest friends. The winner will be able to choose from three themes modeled after DiscoveryFEST curricula: Imagination University, Superhero League, and Discovery Arcade. Playhouse District party will be held at NOLA Brewery, with beverages by NOLA Brewery and food provided. 

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For more information on GiveNOLA Day, visit their website here

For more information on DiscoveryFEST, visit our website here

For more information on DiscoveryFEST's Playhouse District, visit our Facebook event here

For any questions, please email us

DiscoveryFEST Participates in Youth Program Quality Pilot

DiscoveryFEST is extremely proud to be one of fifteen New Orleans youth-focused organizations participating in Baptist Community Ministries' (BCM) Youth Program Quality Initiative (YPQI)!

The goals of the pilot in New Orleans are to improve the quality of participating programs, assist participating programs in developing a culture of continuous program improvement, and to inform the design of a robust and sustainable quality improvement system for youth development programming.

Through the incredible work and participation in this pilot, DiscoveryFEST aims to continue its mission of bringing high quality, enrichment programming to seven schools during the 2015-2016 school year and to be a part of the development for quality initiatives in youth programming for years to come!

Find out more information about YPQI and the other amazing organizations taking part in this initiative here!

Help Our Kids Experience Imaginative Play at Recess!

At DiscoveryFEST, we aim to make the hours of a child's day rich with play, learning, and discovery. That process of play has an incredible power to unleash a child’s imagination, expressive abilities, help them practice roles and responsibilities, develop critical thinking skills, and provide many other curative factors. At our three recess school partners (KIPP Central City Primary, KIPP Believe Primary, and ReNEW Schaumburg), DiscoveryFEST participants have the opportunity to enjoy this imaginative play experience like never before through DiscoveryFEST's signature imaginative recess experience, The L.A.I.R. The L.A.I.R. (which stands for and aims to give children the opportunity to Let their Adventures and Imagination Roll) utilizes costumes, toys, and a variety of other materials to allow children to turn their school's playground into a magical far away land, a swashbuckling pirate adventure, an intergalactic quest across the stars, a treacherous jungle trek, and whatever else children bring to life!

The L.A.I.R. builds on play’s natural abilities to reflect a child’s communicative skills to create a playful environment that fosters further social-emotional development, problem solving, and self-expression in a safe, structured environment. Through this festival of play, children not only bring their imaginations to life on their playgrounds, but also continue their learning and development simultaneously.

And this is where we need your help! To bring The L.A.I.R. to life, our recess coaches are looking for any no longer needed (but still in decent condition) costumes and costume pieces, clothing, toys, props, and other materials that can allow DiscoveryFEST youth to transform themselves into wizards, princesses, superheroes, pirates, space aliens, and much, much more.

If you have an item that you would like to donate to DiscoveryFEST's L.A.I.R. or have questions about The L.A.I.R., let us know by contacting DiscoveryFEST through our Contact Us section here on our website or by emailing us at

Let the Good Times Roll!

This week marked the beginning of another exciting DiscoveryFEST program year! We are thrilled to partner with seven schools for the 2015-2016 school year; three of which began their DiscoveryFEST year this week as they welcomed their recesses coaches. Our eleven coaches had a blast getting to try some new games and introducing a structured, but energetic recesses with all of the smiling faces at KIPP Central City Primary, KIPP Believe Primary, and ReNEW Schaumburg. Congrats to our coaches on an amazing first week and check back here for some continuing exciting recess updates throughout the year and afterschool commencement at our other partner schools in a couple of weeks!

Coach's Corner: May 4, 2015

Coach's Corner: May 4, 2015

DiscoveryFEST aims to make the hours of the day rich with play, learning, and discovery for New Orleans youth. In the first of many, however, we take a look behind the scenes and hear from one of DiscoveryFEST's incredible instructors as she shares her experiences to foster quality afterschool, recess, and summer programs to New Orleans youth. 


KIPP Central City Primary's Water Literacy Courtyard!

DiscoveryFEST is excited to share a campus renovation project at one our partners, KIPP Central City Primary.  With your help, a schoolyard can be turned into a "water literacy campus" that enriches both play and learning and directly supports in-class science instruction about local water issues.

Rain gardens, cypress trees, irises, and a play mound will not only solve the school's flooding issues, but create a joyful and fun environment that empowers students to play a role in shaping the future of the city and the Mississippi River Delta. 

KIPP Central City Primary is asking for your help to raise the remaining $65,000 through Kickstarter. Your donation will allow construction to begin and be completed before the 2015-2016 school year begins at the end of July.

Give NOLA Day 2015!

DiscoveryFEST is proud to be one of 500 local organizations participating in the Greater New Orleans Foundation’s second annual GiveNOLA Day! Hosted on Tuesday, May 5th by the Greater New Orleans Foundation, GiveNOLA Day is the community’s one-day, online giving event to inspire people to give generously to the nonprofit organizations that make our region a stronger and more thriving community for all. It’s our day to come together as one!

Support DiscoveryFEST’s efforts for the 2015-2016 school year at five New Orleans elementary schools to make the hours of a child’s day rich with play, learning, and discovery by stopping by on Tuesday, May 5 and donate to DiscoveryFEST Enrichment Program!


DiscoveryFEST + Playbuild

Several DiscoveryFEST participants took part in an exciting event this afternoon featuring one of DiscoveryFEST's amazing Discovery Partners, Playbuild. Playbuild is a local non-profit who aims to to engage youth through creativity and active learning and to stimulate curiosity, enthusiasm, and an interest in exploring careers across a wide spectrum of design disciplines. Playbuild comes to life as a community playspace designed for fun as well as learning.  Their site at 2828 Thalia houses the Imagination Playground – an architect-designed kit of life-sized building blocks as well as a wide array of other construction toys, games, and books.

In today's activity, students used their own Central City neighborhood as the landscape for imagining this community playspace. Under the direction of Charlotte Jones, Playbuild's Director of Operations and Programming, DiscvoveryFEST students discussed the needs of their community while simultaneously comparing community needs with things they would want to see present in the neighborhood. Afterwards, students continued this activity by redesigning vacant lots with items (such as trees, gardens, paint, and more) that the community needed.

To see more pictures from today's activity, visit the Gallery to view DiscoveryFEST students working and visualizing their designs.