What is White Linen Night?
If you’ve been coming into the shop for a while you know that White Linen Night is one of the biggest events of the year in the Heights and we like to make a big splash. This year we expect things to be back in full swing as 19th street will be closed to vehicle traffic and attendance is expected to bounce back to pre-2020 levels. This will be a big one, folks!
Veterans and first-timers to White Linen Night alike may still be a little curious as to what the evening is about though. Why is it such a big thing? Why is everyone dressed in white? How did it start? Well let us learn ya a bit…
White Linen Night actually originated in New Orleans in 1994 as a means to celebrate the city’s robust cultural and arts scene. The tradition of donning your finest white linens stemmed from the centuries old practice of wearing white to reflect the sun’s rays and wearing linen to provide some relief to the area’s swampy heat.
The celebration made its way to Houston following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. As thousands of New Orleanians were forced to leave their homes, many chose to start anew in our very own Houston, TX. We Houstonians were happy to welcome them.
The Heights’ first White Linen Night took place one year later in 2006 as New Orleans transplants brought more and more of their own cultural traditions to the area. Similar to the night’s origin in New Orleans, White Linen Night in the Heights is a celebration of the neighborhood’s diverse community, bustling small businesses, and rich history.
Since that first White Linen Night, the event grew larger and larger with each passing year. Expect rockin' live music, tasty food and beverages, and an all around grand ole time.
The Manready Crew’s Tips & Tricks
- White Linen Night starts at 6pm and most businesses will close at 10pm. But Manready Mercantile is a pretty popular spot and tends to get very busy. There will be a longer line to get in throughout much of the evening. So if you want to look around we recommend you arrive a little earlier!
- This year Manready Mercantile will be doing a raffle and giving away some awesome prizes! You can enter to win either a year’s supply of our 100% soy wax candles, two tickets to our candle making class, or one of our specially curated Whiskey Kits!
- The crew will also be bringing over our leather press from our production facility. We had a custom White Linen Night stamp made so patrons could make their own limited edition White Linen Night leather coaster!
- Expect a closed off 19th street lined with white tents, local artists, food trucks, live music, and free drinks! We recommend a plan for parking or lining up a ride to and from the event. Rideshare service ALTO is actually sponsoring White Linen Night in the Heights this year! Use code WLN2023 to get $10 off two rides. Don’t drink and drive!
- Be kind to fellow patrons and be patient with staff, security and volunteers. Also be sure to support the small businesses that make White Linen Night possible! We could all use it!
- Here’s a no brainer: Wear white linen! Or at least something white. Check out Manready’s limited edition White Linen Night 2023 tee shirt for an easy slam dunk!
- 19th street is home to some great restaurants! Harold’s, Shandy’s, Torchy’s, Alice Blue and We Olive are all great places to grab a bite. But be warned… They will be busy!
- The street is supplying porta potties this year. If you see one, don’t pass it up! With the crowds we’re expecting, these small businesses can’t keep up with bathroom demand.
- Wear comfy shoes. Places to sit down and relax will be limited. We also recommend bringing a hat and shades – the sun is going to be intense this year! Be sure to wear extra sunblock!
- Pack a small umbrella in case the Houston weather does its thing.
- Bring cash and your ID.
- BYOB: You can pack your own cooler again this year! But make sure it’s portable. Some storefronts won’t allow larger coolers past a certain point in the store.
- Bring water and stay hydrated!!
- Lastly, the Manready crew will be back at it the following Sunday serving up Bloody Mary’s with our friends from Big Bayou! If you want to avoid the crowds, Sunday is a great day to come see what we got.
Of course, we’re giving a special thank you to our vendors Blade and Bow, Saint Arnold Brewing Company, Bodyarmor, Topo Chico and Watertight Cocktail Co. who help us make the shop a fun and unique spot to hang out for White Linen Night. Many of our vendors will be present for the evening as well. On top of enjoying a great beverage, you can learn more about these awesome businesses!
That’s all we got, folks! We’re expecting a big showing and fantastic time. Feel free to stop by to say hello and as always… Thanks for shopping small!