Media Contacts:
Mary Beth Romig and Jennifer Lotz
New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau
504-566-5019 /


NEW ORLEANS – April 9, 2009 – As 20,000 runners gear up to hit the historic streets of New Orleans for the Crescent City Classic, this weekend continues with a slate of events for the month of April. A busy season of festivals and special events for the entire family is just getting started.

“What some cities consider their yearly calendar of events, we call Spring,” said Stephen Perry, President and CEO of the New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau. “As we kick off the beginning of festival season, we look forward to welcoming visitors from far and wide and invite them to celebrate the unique culture celebrated in weekend after weekend of these great events. It is what the residents of New Orleans enjoy the most and do best, and we are eager to share our spirit of hospitality.”

In referencing the festivals and events, Perry noted the importance of luring visitors to the city, particularly from the regional drive-in market. “Economically and culturally, festivals have grown to be the lifeblood of our city’s tourism industry,” said Perry. “The recent success of the traditional festivals and the new additions to the calendar signal as well that New Orleans is very much alive and thriving And with many of the festivals being free, it provides added value to a visit to a destination that is already a great value for the travel dollar.”

The city’s busy 2009 calendar of events through the Summer include:

April 11 – 12

Crescent City Classic: One of the world’s great 10K races, the Crescent City Classic is an Easter Weekend Tradition, run on a flat, fast, 6.2 mile course beginning at Jackson Square and finishing in New Orleans’ City Park.

Easter Sunday features four Easter parades and Sunday brunches at great restaurants throughout New Orleans.

April 17 – 19

French Quarter Festival: Serving up a uniquely flavorable taste of New Orleans, the largest “free” festival in the South includes 250 hours of entertainment featuring more than 150 musical performances on seventeen stages throughout the French Quarter over a three-day weekend, the “world’s largest jazz brunch,” and special activities for the entire family.

April 24 – 26 and May 1 – 3

New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival Presented by Shell: “Celebrating 40 years of peace, love and crawfish,” this seven-day cultural event takes place at the New Orleans Fair Grounds and features a stellar musical line-up, a food Fair offering classic New Orleans staples, Creole and Cajun offerings and international cuisine, and more than 300 regionally and nationally acclaimed artists in four distinct event venues.

May 7 – 10

Bike Week New Orleans at the Broken Spoke: Inaugural event will include bike shows, organized rides, special cuisine and food events, and entertainment in the city’s Warehouse District.

May 19 – 23

New Orleans Wine and Food Experience (NOWFE): One of the most prestigious festivals of its kind, NOWFE celebrates 18 years of wine and food brings together world-renowned winemakers, celebrated chefs and industry insiders for a showcase of signature events.

May 22 – 24

Greek Festival New Orleans: In its 36th year on the banks of Bayou St. John, the three-day events celebrates Greek heritage and cuisine.

June 13 – 15

A New Orleans Vieux To Do: Experience three different festivals all happening nearby each other on the same weekend, including the New Orleans Seafood Festival, the Louisiana Cajun-Zydeco Festival (both at the Old U.S. Mint) and the Great Creole Tomato Festival (a few steps away at the Historic French
Market). ,,

July 3 – 5

The ESSENCE Music Festival: In its 15th year, the biggest African-American festival of its kind showcases a stellar line-up of musical talent with concerts in the Louisiana Superdome, inspiring seminars, history, community and a marketplace.

July 8 – 12

Tales of the Cocktail: Described as “the most spirited event of the summer,” the festival in its 7th year celebrates cocktails, cuisine and culture with more than 100 separate events and seminars.

July 30 – August 2

Satchmo Summerfest: An entertaining and educational weekend in the French Quarter honoring New Orleans’ native son, Louis Armstrong, with live musical performances, local cuisine and special seminars.

Consistently recognized as one of the top five convention and visitor bureaus in the United States, The New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau is the driving force behind New Orleans' most important industry, tourism. Today the cultural riches, sensual indulgences and unparalleled service that define the New Orleans experience continue to flourish, as they have for centuries. The most celebrated and historic core of the city - including the French Quarter, Central Business District, Warehouse and Arts District, Magazine Street, the Faubourg Marigny and Garden District - are thriving. In 2007 New Orleans welcomed 7.1 million visitors, nearly double the amount of visitors in 2006. For more information, visit