The first weekend of New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, April 24-26, was rainy. Did that stop the party? Absolutely not, although the promise of better weather did influence my decision to wait until the following weekend.
The second Friday was a pleasant day to be there. The lines were short, and navigating the grounds was easy. I enjoyed the music of Paloma Faith, Galactica, and No Doubt.
The big act of the day on Saturday was Elton John with Ed Sheeran performing at one of the other stages. Needless to say, there is no cap on ticket sales, and it was ridiculously crowded. I hate when two major acts that I want to see are scheduled at the same time, but I understand it is necessary to schedule them that way in order to spread out the crowds. I have seen many big acts including Dave Matthews, Fleetwood Mac, John Mayer, Eric Clapton, Bon Jovi, etc., but I don’t think I have ever seen it as crowded as it was for Elton John. On a normal day, I would have walked over to catch a little of Ed Sheeran, but the crowd was just too thick to try to navigate through. Sadly to say, I’ll have to see Ed another time. But Elton John was fantastic.
As always, the food sold at the festival from the participating restaurants in the city was excellent. You won’t find any hamburgers or hot dogs at JazzFest. Red Beans and Rice, Jambalaya, Crayfish Monica and Crayfish Bread are among the favorites. My fave is Poulet Fricassee (chicken on a stick), Jama Jama (sauteed spinach) and fried plantains. I also highly recommend the Cochon de Lait Po-boy (pulled pork dressed with spicy creole cole slaw). After staying hydrated with H20 all day, I did enjoy a couple of ice cold beers toward the evening.
If you are planning a trip to New Orleans, springtime is a wonderful time. It’s not unbearably hot, and there is so much to do. Fall is another great time. In fact, any time is a great time. There is always something going on and something to do here. If you visit in the summertime, expect heat and humidity, and if you visit us in winter, pack for all seasons. Winter weather is unpredictable and can change drastically from one day to the next, so be ready for anything. We love it all. It's part of the ambiance.