Home > Press > NOLA.com Times-Picayune article and photos on Ezra Open 2015

Better than Ezra, Deuce McAllister, Mickey Loomis and Steve Wozniak converge at party

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Better than Ezra has become as well known in New Orleans for its philanthropic efforts as its hit songs and energetic performances. On Saturday (April 11), the Better than Ezra Foundation hosted its 13th annual Ezra Open Benefit and Concert at the House of Blues.

VIP guests started the night in the Parish room, where a casino night, hosted by Trishelle Canatella, raised even more funds for the foundation. Amanda Ducorbier and Rathbone, as well as the Treme Brass Band performed. The party shifted to the main room, where Big Sam’s Funky Nation, Ed Robertson of the Barenaked Ladies, and Better than Ezra (Kevin Griffin, Tom Drummond, Michael Jerome and Jim Payne) took to the stage. Guests could also bid on silent auction items, but the live auction — helmed by Mark Romig (a.k.a. the announcer of New Orleans Saints home games) — which took place in between musical sets, revved up the crowd, which included Steve Wozniak (an Apple computer co-founder), Mickey Loomis, Deuce McAllister, actors Paul Rae and Jay Jablonski, chef Tory McPhail, and the Mackel brothers: Fletcher and Travers, both fresh from placing first and second, respectively, in the French Quarter Festival’s crawfish eating contest in the media division.

Proceeds from the event benefit after-school arts and educational programs at Bethune Elementary School, as well as other foundation concerns.