July 27, 2006 | New Orleans

Several nights a week, my wife and I cool off with a snowball from Casey's on West Esplanade in Metairie! Many nights, it's the meeting place for several of our friends.

Snowballs are a tradition for locals all around the New Orleans area. For me, it's as New Orleans as Red Beans & Rice or even Mardi Gras!

Many towns across the country have “snow-cones” but they are nothing like our finely shaved ice from a “Sno-wizard” machine invented right here in New Orleans. While many people have their favorite places, the really good ones across town are well known by all.

I just got hooked on “stuffed” snowballs…ice shavings and syrup at the bottom, soft serve ice cream or yogurt in the middle, topped with more ice shavings and syrup! Yum!

Generally, one would assume snowballs are just a summertime/seasonal treat. With our tropical weather, you can usually find snowball stands opening in April and not closing until the end of October. Lucky for us…as this is truly one of life's pleasures!