Springtime in New Orleans means festival season. It’s hard to decide how to spend your weekend with so many options to enjoy food, music, and sunshine. One festival not to be missed is the French Quarter Festival, a great way to truly immerse yourself in New Orleans’ rich culture.

This festival is distinctive because there are no specific fairgrounds; instead, there are over 20 stages dispersed throughout the Quarter. This allows people to truly engage with the best food and music New Orleans has to offer while they traverse the streets of this historic neighborhood.

FQF is known for being the largest free music festival in the South. This year marks its 36th Anniversary. It was started in 1984 to highlight how unique the French Quarter is and celebrate the culture and heritage of the city. Its goals are similar to that of the Jazz and Heritage Festival, but many people feel that in recent years, as Jazz Fest has expanded to include more national acts, the French Quarter Festival is more representative of the musical culture of New Orleans.

The genres represented include R&B, New Orleans funk, contemporary jazz, brass bands, folk, gospel, Latin, Zydeco, classical, cabaret, and international. There will be more than 200 artists performing on 23 stages. The main stages are located on the riverfront, but be sure to move all throughout the French Quarter to see different music genres and try different food vendors. The music is diverse, local, and extremely fun.

Not only is the music great, but the food is just as notable. Some locals say that the food is actually what draws them most to the festival. This is an amazing opportunity to try dishes from some of the most famous restaurants from all over the city because they will offer smaller, affordable dishes, averaging around $10. Such restaurants include; Dickie Brennan’s Steakhouse, Galatoire’s, Broussard’s, Court of Two Sisters, Antoine’s, Morrow’s, and countless more!

The festival is free and open to the public. This year, it will take place April 11-14, 2019. The full line up and list of food vendors are available on their website!


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