If you’re anything like me, being away from New Orleans for the summer is borderline painful. I miss almost everything about the city: the people, the food, the music—you name it, I miss it. So, I’ve been working on finding ways to bring NOLA to me here in Minnesota. Wherever you are, hopefully you’ll find these tips helpful in bringing a bit of the 504 to you!

1. Turn On Some Jazz Music.

If you hear jazz music and DON’T think of New Orleans, you’re doing something wrong. If jazz isn’t your forte, pull up the Voodoo Fest lineup and starting listening to some of those artists. You’re bound to find something you like on there, and it’ll get you hyped for the festival. 

2. Find Yourself Some Cajun Food.

It definitely won’t be as good as authentic New Orleans cuisine, but it’ll hold you over for the time being. If all else fails, head to your local Applebee’s and pick up their Bourbon Street Steak and Shrimp. The dish title itself is enough to make me nostalgic for my second home.

3. Buy Yourself Some Mardi Gras Beads.

They’re super cheap, and they’ll transport you right back to that crazy week. Maybe you don’t remember getting your beads in the first place, so here’s your chance to get some and actually remember it. Use them to decorate your room, or if nothing else, you can throw them in a tree and feel like you’re back on campus under the bead tree.

4. Hit Up Your Local Park.

For me, walking in Audubon is an instant stress-reliever. So I’ve been exploring parks near me, trying to recreate the relaxation I feel when I’m walking through Audubon. Discovering a new park or body of water may be a helpful way to ease the nostalgia of Audubon/The Fly.

5. Have a Group Skype Date With Your Roommates.

Or suitemates, or just your squad in general. No better way to bring yourself back to New Orleans and Tulane than chatting it up with the people that make it feel like home in the first place! 

These are just a few ways that I’ve found to bring NOLA up to Minnesota, so what about you? How do you keep yourself from missing New Orleans too much? If you’re worried about making it through the summer, just remember, move-in is only 2 months away! We can make it, I promise!

COVER PHOTO: Justin Haber

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