NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) – After a record breaking French Quarter Fest weekend, we’re back at it with Jazz Fest taking over the Fairgrounds starting Friday.
They’re [hotels] telling us that April 2020 may be their best month since the beginning of COVID, which is a very welcome sign,” Kelly Schulz with New Orleans & Company said.
Hotels this past weekend were booked or close to it with all of the different events in the city, but it’s just getting started.
“We like to say the Jazz Fest is like hosting a Super Bowl every year,” Schulz said.
Schulz says it will easily bring in $400 million this year, probably more.
“We think this year will be one of the biggest of the best because we haven’t had it since 2019. There is so much pent up demand,” Schulz said.
Canseco’s Market by the Fairgrounds is already busy on Wednesday.
“It’s been very hectic we have a lot of business that’s coming around the store, especially at this time, we’re having an early start,” Assitant Manager Mary Strout said. “It normally starts on Thursday, but we’ve had a lot of influx of people coming in last night and today and as you can see a lot of people are already here.”
It’s only going to get busier for them. Not only serving up Cubans at the festival, but also in the store.
“We’re expecting about between 1,500 and 2,000 people a day,” Strout said. “We’re staffed up. We went to a food show, we got everything, back stock, anything that we knew we’re gonna really have ready to go, so, we’re pretty prepared.”
The oldest original Jazz Fest vendor, the Vaucresson’s are busy prepping their famous hot sausage po’boys for the masses.
“These two years without this institutional period of festivals, which for us in this city with our biggest industry of tourism, really, really let us know what we missed,” Vance Vaucresson said. “We didn’t realize how big of a part of our lives financially and also fundamentally these festivals were.”
At French Quarter Fest, they realized they needed to get back into festival shape with even bigger crowds than years past.
“I ran out of bread a lot,” Vaucresson said. “I ran out of things that I thought we had planned based on previous years, so we’re just gonna hope that we can get through. We’ve got some supply chain issues, like everyone else is, getting some things that we need. So, people can’t really give us what we would normally get, but we’re gonna work with it.”
They won’t miss another year and another opportunity to showcase the city’s culture and history.
“We’ve got the sausage, we’ve got the bread, you bring in the people and we’re gonna make sure that your face is in the place and we’re gonna feed it,” Vaucrisson said.
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