A few hours before DJ Soul Sister kicked off her popular weekly "Hustle" dance party upstairs, Mimi's in the Marigny announced on Saturday that the bar's music schedule is suspended indefinitely.
We regret to inform you that Mimi's has to suspend music for the time being. We will keep you informed as we ourselves become informed of the situation. Please remember that we are still your favorite neighborhood bar and continue to support us and our amazing employees. Kitchen will still be cooking and drinks will continue to flow. Thank you for your continued support.
A lawsuit filed by Marigny residents in Orleans Parish civil district court on Friday challenges that the bar hosts music "illegally" and noise is "plainly audible" in neighborhood homes and businesses, causing "physical discomfort and annoyance." Judge Michael Bagneris told attorneys representing Mimi’s that the bar must cease its music unless it can present city permits that say it can do otherwise. The lawsuit alleges that the bar has hosted music without proper permits and is not zoned for entertainment.
Last year, Mimi's and other downtown venues had unplugged the music as the City's Department of Revenue cracked down on permits — after discussion with the the city's cultural economy adviser Scott Hutcheson, Mimi's was back within days. In September, Mayor Mitch Landrieu issued a statement, saying:
To be clear, no one from the City asked Mimi’s in the Marigny to stop live entertainment.
I’ve instructed the City’s enforcement agencies to enforce the law fairly and to take a customer-friendly approach. This means that we offer assistance in securing the appropriate permits to businesses that have been offering live music for years. In most cases, the City does not need to immediately issue summonses or administrative subpoenas, if a business owner agrees to work actively to secure the required permits.
To learn how to come into compliance with City law, cultural businesses can contact my Office of Cultural Economy.
We are a city of music, and we are a city of neighborhoods. We will work to strike a balance so that they can exist together.
On Facebook, Mimi's in the Marigny wrote that "because of the lawsuit, we are not able to discuss the details of the case. In addition, we choose not to slam our neighbors. Do not mistake that for an admission of guilt."