There’s no better way to experience the history, soul and charm of The Big Easy than at a festival. While Mardi Gras is the most popular and well-known festival in New Orleans, the celebrations don’t stop there. With more than 400,000 attendees each year, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, also known as Jazz Fest, is the city’s second most popular festival.
Taking place from April 25 to May 4 this spring at the Fair Grounds Race Course, this 10-day, 2 weekend festival celebrates the music and culture of New Orleans and Louisiana with live music, authentic Louisiana cuisine and crafting.
Despite what many people may believe, jazz is not the only type of music featured at Jazz Fest. This year’s music lineup represents the various cultures in and around the city, and includes artists such as Santana, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, Christina Aguilera and Robin Thicke, as well as contemporary and traditional jazz and big band artists.
Festival-goers can get a true taste of Louisiana cuisine at 1 of the festival’s 2 food areas that offer everything from BBQ plates and jambalaya to crawfish and beignets. Live cooking demonstrations can also be found at the Food Heritage and Cajun Cabin stages.
Cultural performances such as drumming and dancing, and crafting demonstrations and displays featuring sculptures, paintings and photography, can also be found on various stages and tents throughout the festival grounds.
Want to make a weekend out of Jazz Fest? Located Just 10 minutes from the festival, the French Quarter — New Orleans’ oldest and most popular neighborhood — is chock-full of hotels, restaurants, historic sites and other music venues that are sure to provide festival-goers with the ultimate Big Easy experience.
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