Media Contacts:
Jennifer Day or Jenn Lotz
New Orleans CVB

New Orleans Named “Best Day Trip” Destination by FESTIVALSOUTH’s
2011 Best of the Pine Belt
35,000 voters from the Gulf Coast Area choose New Orleans as a top weekend getaway

NEW ORLEANS− July 7, 2011−35,000 voters selected New Orleans as a “Best Day Trip” destination in FESTIVALSOUTH’s first annual 2011 Best of the Pine Belt survey, sponsored by Signature Magazine.

FESTIVALSOUTH is historic Downtown Hattiesburg’s second annual, multi-week, multi-genre arts festival held June 4-18, 2011. Both the festival and the Best of the Pine Belt 2011 awards celebrate dance, art, theatre and the musical contributions of both Mississippians and of those in their neighboring states of Louisiana and Alabama.

“Hattiesburg has a rich musical tradition, and New Orleans is the ‘Birthplace of Jazz,’ giving visitors to the Gulf Coast an opportunity to experience first-hand some of the most influential music in the world,” said Stephen Perry, president and CEO of the New Orleans CVB. “We thank our neighbors in Mississippi for voting us a ‘Best Day Trip’ destination and we look forward to hosting them in New Orleans for a getaway where we will continue to celebrate the musical, artistic and cultural contributions of our states.”

The winners of the 2011 Best of the Pine Belt were officially announced in a special June 1 edition of Signature Magazine, sponsor of the 2011 Best of the Pine Belt awards. A complete list of winners can also be found at Voting for the 2012 awards begins on February 14.

The New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau is a nationally accredited, 1,000-member destination marketing organization and the largest and most successful private economic development corporation in Louisiana. We create $5 billion in new capital each year more than any other business sector by attracting millions of visitors, special events and conventions. The CVB and its members influence thousands of decision-makers and millions of visitors to choose New Orleans through direct sales, marketing, public relations, branding and visitor services at our New Orleans headquarters and offices in Washington, D.C., New York, Chicago and four foreign countries. Consistently recognized as one of the top five CVBs in the country, the New Orleans CVB celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2010. For more information, please visit