Revelers leave rave reviews for New Orleans

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wwltv.com

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 6:22 PM

Updated Wednesday, Feb 13 at 11:15 PM

Katie Moore / Eyewitness News
Email: kmoore@wwltv.com | Twitter: @katiecmoore

NEW ORLEANS -- The party is over and the thousands in town for Carnival are now heading out of town.

Mayor Mitch Landrieu and Police Chief Ronal Serpas shut the Bourbon Street party down at midnight Tuesday.

“It continues to reflect to the people of America that the people of New Orleans can do anything they put their minds to,” Landrieu said, looking back at three weeks of major events.

Despite the big showing at the turn of Ash Wednesday and the obvious effort to get Bourbon as clean as can be expected, not everyone got the memo that Mardi Gras was over.

Tessa Snyder and Sarah Forrey were walking down Bourbon at 10 a.m., still costumed from the night before.

“It looks a lot cleaner. It feels like it was all just a dream. Right? There are no beads anywhere. There are no people. It's crazy,” the two Denver residents said.

By mid-morning, many had cleared out their hotel rooms with beads by the bag loaded up and ready to head home.

Outside the Hilton Hotel at the foot of Canal Street, Mitchell Murphy estimated that he probably packed up 150 pounds of beads in his truck as he prepared to head back to Houston.

“It was fabulous. Had a wonderful time. Great city. Great people. It was a great trip,” said Dottie Sievert, a tourist in town from Chicago.

Her husband, Pete Sievert, got the chance to ride in Bacchus. He was one of two people our WWL-TV crew met in town to actually ride in the parades.

Tiffany and Anthony Jones got to ride in Zulu.

“This was my first time actually riding in Mardi Gras. So, yes. We were able to experience Zulu for a completely different perspective,” Tiffany Jones said.

At the airport, lines ebbed and flowed throughout the day. 15,000 passengers were expected to pass through, like Duc Pham.

“It was just non-stop amazingness,” Pham said before he boarded a flight back to Northern California.

Airport officials said the airlines tend to add extra flights the day after Mardi Gras, and so far this year, it appears many of those will be at or near capacity.

“I definitely want to come back,” Pham said.

“Already making reservations,” Murphy said.

Early estimates show the city certainly did "good".

The Convention and Visitor's Bureau showed occupancy numbers down from last year, with 97 percent of capacity on Saturday, compared to 99 percent in 2012.

However, all of their members hadn't been surveyed yet at the time of this report.

 

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