Sugar Bowl fans give jolt to local economy

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wwltv.com

Posted on January 1, 2013 at 11:29 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jan 2 at 7:27 AM

Scott Satchfield / Eyewitness News
Email: ssatchfield@wwltv.com | Twitter: @satchfield

NEW ORLEANS -- Louisville and Florida fans are in New Orleans in big numbers, and while Tuesday is mostly about celebrating, they're still focused on Wednesday’s Sugar Bowl matchup.

"Hopefully the Gators are gonna win, man,” said Florida fan Matthew Anderson. “They're gonna blow 'em out."

Louisville fan Lisa Goebn said, "I'm hoping for the best. I hope the Cardinals pull it out."

Grammy-nominated group Fun. took the stage, entertaining a rain-soaked crowd at the Fan Fest stage on Decatur.

There, and across the French Quarter, you couldn't miss the thousands of people sporting Gator orange and Cardinal red gear, soaking up the famous New Orleans atmosphere.

"University of Louisville fans travel extremely well, and New Orleans is a great destination,” said Louisville resident Kevin Duncan. “So, you don't need much incentive to come down here."

Florida fan Debbie Williams said, “It's been wonderful. We came in on Saturday so we could spend several days here, and we have eaten our way through New Orleans and it's been wonderful. We love it."

Tourism officials say historically the city cashes in on a $150 million impact from the Sugar Bowl as many fans arrive days early and even stick around after.

For Florida and Louisville fans, it's a chance to watch their teams battle it out in a big-time game, set in the most festive bowl destination of them all.

"It's fantastic. I love New Orleans, first time here. It's great,” said Louisville fan Neal Patel. “I'm pretty pumped for it. I don't have tickets, but I'm gonna find 'em."

"New Orleans is always a great place to come. Beautiful place for football. Great game,” said Florida fan Jerry Richardson. “What more could you ask for?"

 

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