Festivals bring huge economic impact to the city

Festivals bring big economic impact to the city

NEW ORLEANS -- The fall festival season is in full swing, and many of these events are helping make a huge impact on the area.

One festival this weekend is the Blues and Barbeque Fest at Lafayette Square.

It's that time of the year when you can find a festival with food, fun and music every weekend.

"I've been to all the festivals man, been going to jazz fest since the 80's, been coming to this fest every year. I try to make every festival this time of the year," said Tony Fredrik.

For natives like Tony Fredrick the reasons for festivals in New Orleans has a simple explanation.

"To maintain the culture, to keep the culture real," he says.

And that culture is doing more than just providing people with a great time.

"Producing activity, people are buying goods, food, people are coming in staying in hotels, and they all add up to being wonderful fuel for our economy," said Mark Romig, President of the New Orleans Tourism and Marketing Corporation.

So Romig believes that festivals are a big deal.

“You’ve got all those food vendors, you've got the people that come on from out of town that might stay in the hotel or come in for the day and they're still spending money in our community and those are tax dollars that we'd rather have in our community than another," he said.

And with several new festivals starting this year Mark Romig explained that in just Orleans Parish, there are over 130 registered festivals.

"We're doing a St. Louis spare rib, we've got a roasted garlic mac n cheese, and a really awesome brisket chili that we call frito pie, it's got a lot of layers to it. Lots of love in there," said Phil Mosley.

Ronnie Evans and Phil Mosley own Blue Oak Barbecue and as local business owner's festivals have become a way of life.

“We love going to festivals and then now that we've got this business going we love doing the festivals. We started with po'boy fest and now we started doing Blues and Barbecue, and this is going to be our first year at voodoo," said Mosley.

“For our employees and for us it creates a change of pace a little bit. We get to practice cooking on the spot. It's a lot more food in volume it adds a different side of the restaurant business," said Evans.

And if you ask Fredrick, there's no other place to go for festivals like in New Orleans.

"New Orleans set the bar pretty high on festivals,” he said.

(© 2016 WWL)


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