August in New Orleans calls for a special wardrobe beyond the shorts and sun hats of summer. With Red Dress Run and White Linen Night on the horizon, locals and visitors will be donning red dresses and white linen and making their way through the Bywater, French Quarter, and downtown New Orleans. Dining deals and attraction specials are also highlights of the month, along with Satchmo Summerfest and plenty of options for fun. Here are our top 10 things to do this August in New Orleans.

Andy Kutcher, New Orleans & Company

Delight in COOLinary dining deals

Take advantage of dining deals in New Orleans with COOLinary. Indulge in two-course lunch, or three-course dinner and brunch deals from August 1-31. Typically, over 100 restaurants participate. Stay tuned for more info. Don’t miss your chance to try some of the best food in New Orleans for a steal.

Participate in Museum Month

Purchase one museum membership and get access to all participating museums for the month of August. Check back here for the latest on who’s participating and enjoy staying cool this summer in NOLA. 

Tap your toes at Satchmo Summerfest

Celebrating the life and legacy of Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong, Satchmo Summerfest is a food and music fest that takes over the French Quarter. Held at the New Orleans Jazz Museum, expect performances in tribute to Louis Armstrong, as well as authentic New Orleans cuisine. Satchmo Summerfest is August 3-4 and admission is free.

Do a thing or two for free  

Summer in New Orleans is the season of long hours and deep discounts. Watch the sunset and sailboats on the Lakefront, check out the city’s free outdoor movie series, or enjoy live music at Tipitina’s Free Fridays throughout the summer. See here for 35 free things to do this summer in NOLA. 

Stroll the art galleries at White Linen Night

Fidelity Bank White Linen Night returns on Saturday, Aug. 3. Art galleries on the 300-600 blocks of Julia Street will open their doors to patrons in the largest free art stroll in the city. With more than 20 participating galleries, live music and art installations, special giveaways, delicious bites, cocktails, and much more, White Linen Night is an opportune time to experience the best of the Arts/Warehouse District. The Julia Street block party kicks off at 5 p.m. The following Saturday, Aug. 10, Dirty Linen Night is hosted on nearby Royal Street. 

Attend NOLA Pickleball Fest

NOLA Pickle Fest, benefitting the Brees Dream Foundation, is back from August 7-11. This unique, festival-style pickleball tournament will feature 24 tournament-quality PickleRoll courts, live music, a celebrity exhibition match featuring Drew Brees, VIP experiences, and much more. Sign up here for the latest on scheduling and ticket prices. 

Race for charity at Red Dress Run

On the morning of Saturday, Aug. 10, runners dressed in red will take to the streets of the Marigny and French Quarter for an annual charity race. The event, presented by the Hash House Harriers, is a fundraiser for local non-profits. It may be a race, but lots of people go just for fun since the event ends with food and live music. Find more information and register here

Stay cool with a sno-ball

There’s nothing quite like a cold sno-ball on a hot day. Enjoy this classic New Orleans treat of shaved ice with sweet syrup at Imperial Woodpecker, Hansen’s Sno-Bliz, and these sno-ball shops around town. Having trouble deciding what flavor to get? Check out our “What Sno-Ball Are You?” quiz here.   

Celebrate the start of Southern Decadence

Celebrating the city’s LGBTQ+ community, Southern Decadence is an annual Labor Day weekend tradition. From August 29 - September 2, enjoy parties, brunches, and events in the French Quarter. See here for more information and get ready to dance the night away during Southern Decadence. 

Take a dip in a hotel pool

Relax and unwind at a hotel pool in New Orleans. We’ve got hotel pools by type of traveler here. So whether you’re coming with the whole family or riding solo, a cool escape is not far away.