New Orleans Events and Festivals

(New Orleans, Louisiana - LA, USA)

They don't call New Orleans the 'City That Care Forgot' for no reason, as New Orleans is definitely a city that knows how to party. The calendar is packed with an amazing variety of events and festivals to suit all tastes, including the world famous Mardi Gras Parade, with related balls, parties and Jazz Fest. Whatever time you happen to arrive in New Orleans, you can almost guarantee the locals are busy celebrating and partying, or at least planning the next big one.

New Orleans's helpful tourist information office is always a useful source for current events, festivals and things to do in New Orleans. Many of the events and festivals in New Orleans draw huge crowds of both participants and spectators, providing tourists with a wide range of things to see and do whilst staying in the exciting city of New Orleans.

National Public Holidays

  • 1st January - New Year's Day
  • Third Monday in January - Martin Luther King Day
  • 12th February - Lincoln's Birthday
  • Third Monday in February - Washington's Birthday
  • Last Monday in May - Memorial Day
  • 4th July - Independence Day
  • First Monday in September - Labor Day
  • Second Monday in October - Columbus Day
  • 11th November - Veterans Day
  • 4th Thursday in November - Thanksgiving
  • 25th December - Christmas Day

New Orleans Calendar of Festivals and Events 2014 / 2015


  • Mardi Gras Season - January to March, possibly the world's biggest party, the season kicks off with the Feast of Epiphany and continues with numerous street parties, parades and balls that become increasingly frequent in the two weeks before the main day. Mardi Gras coincides with Fat Tuesday, the day before lent, and can be any Tuesday between February 3 to March 9. The city of New Orleans is absolute mayhem and craziness the week before
  • The Battle Of New Orleans Commemoration - early January, annual re-enactment of the famous Battle of 1815, complete with canons and authentic uniforms


  • Zulu Festival - early February, part of Mardi Gras celebrations, this annual festival is organized by the Audubon Institute and offers a staggering variety of live entertainment and delicious food
  • Antique Rose Sale - mid-February, held at the Botanic Gardens in City Park
  • Dallas Autorama - mid-February, not to be missed by car lovers, this exposition displays hundreds of vehicles, ranging from vintage to latest model cars
  • New Orleans Boat Show - mid-February, attractions include fishing demonstrations, scuba diving and numerous other exhibitions
  • Black Heritage Festival - late February, part of Black History Month offering numerous exhibitions and activities highlighting African-American culture and traditions


  • Tennessee Williams Festival - late March early April, celebrates the life of author Tennessee Williams through lectures, theatrical performances and walking tours
  • Louisiana Sportsmen's Shows - mid-March, offers over 400 booths covering sport fishing, hunting and boating, as well as discounts and special exhibitions
  • St. Patrick's Day Parade - mid-March, winds its way through the French Quarter
  • Children's World's Fair - mid-March, run by the Louisiana Children's Museum for children aged 4 to 14 and involves sports and games, food, craft and music from 10 countries around the world
  • Bloomin' on the Bricks - mid-March, annual celebration of Spring through arts, music and garden tours
  • The Strawberry Jam 'n Toast to the Arts Festival - mid-March, popular music festival featuring a huge range of musical styles spread over several stages, as well as dance performances and art workshops for the kids


  • Jazz Fest - late April to early May, New Orleans premier Jazz celebration that also includes other musical styles and cultures of Louisiana, such as blues, Cajun, zydeco, Afro-Caribbean and swamp pop, as well as awesome food
  • French Quarter Festival - mid-April, a free event that celebrates everything great about New Orleans with music, food and a friendly party vibe
  • Annual Spring Fiesta - mid to late April, spread over two weekends, and including a Home Tour of the French Quarter, Uptown and Garden District, as well as musical performances and the Presentation at Jackson Square
  • EarthDay Concert at Fair Park - late April, a free family orientated event with ecological activities aimed at raising awareness on conservation of natural resources
  • MO Fest - late April, free showcase of local music at Woldenberg Park, including plenty of fine food
  • Swing in the Oaks - last Sunday of April, free concert of swing classics performed by the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra


  • Volks Fest - mid-May, dating back to 1931 and offering copious amounts of German cooking, music, dancing and beer
  • New Orleans Wine and Food Experience - late May, a celebration of food and wine from New Orleans and around the world
  • Greek Festival - late May, celebrating all things Greek including folk dancing, music, jewelry, art and food


  • Back to the Beach Festival - early June, annual event along the shores of Lake Pontchartrain, at Laketown in Kenner, and featuring live music, food, games and local craftwork
  • International Beer Tasting Event - early June, sample beers from around the world
  • International Arts Festival - mid-June, celebrating music and culture from communities throughout South America, the Caribbean and Africa
  • French Market Creole Tomato Festival - mid-June, celebrates the Creole tomato through cooking demonstrations, tasting, food, a parade and plenty of music
  • FestiGals - an all women event covering four days in the third week of June. A womens weekend festival with its base at the Hotel Monteleone in the French Quarter. Activities include a stiletto stroll, cookery demonstrations, health and wellbeing discussions and plenty more
  • Ocean Fest - mid-June, celebrate Ocean Day at the Aquarium of the Americas with special presentations, performances and other events


  • Go 4th on the River - early July, celebrate Independence Day on the banks of the Mississippi with plenty of food, music and fireworks
  • Swamp Pop Music Festival - mid-July, features the talents of local and nationally known musicians, as well as a beauty pageant, car show and Jambalaya cook-off
  • Bastille Day Celebration- early July, musical performances and a celebration of French food
  • Great Gospel Gathering - mid-July, celebration of gospel music with performances by nationally recognized musicians
  • Steinhauer Arts and Crafts Show - mid-July, numerous artists showcasing handmade arts and crafts


  • Satchmo Summerfest - early August, celebrating the life of famous local Louis Armstrong, with live music, seminars and plenty of food
  • Tales of the Cocktail - mid-August, celebrating the history and culture of dining in New Orleans in numerous French Quarter restaurants


  • Southern Decadence - early September, celebrating gay life, music and culture


  • Haunted House - October 1 to 31, organized by the Chinchuba Institute, a specially designed haunted house open all month (midnight on weekends) leading up to Halloween
  • Art for Art's Sake - early October, one of the biggest arts events of the year, featuring a free gallery hop, Julia Street party and the opening of numerous exhibitions
  • Swamp Fest - early October, located at the Zoo and featuring Cajun and zydeco bands, arts and crafts, and all sorts of weird and wonderful foods
  • Angola Prison Rodeo - throughout October, participants are inmates of Angola Prison and also includes prison-made arts and crafts
  • New Orleans Film Festival - mid-October, screenings of films in a variety of locations, including the IMAX theater
  • VooDoo Music Experience - mid-October, two days of music spread over three stages showcasing the best in pop and alternative rock


  • Celebration in the Oaks - November 26 to January 2, when the Spanish moss and the oak trees in City Park are lit up with Christmas lights, making for a spectacular sight
  • The Big Easy Comedy Fest - mid-November, includes sketch comedy, one man shows and talent showcases


  • Christmas New Orleans Style - all of December, a wide range of events and activities throughout the city including tours of 19th century decorated homes, cruises, cooking demonstrations, walking tours and gospel choirs performing in St. Louis Cathedral
  • Southern Comfort Cocktail Tour - daily throughout December, learn about the history of cocktails in New Orleans
  • Christmas Concert in St. Louis Cathedral - mid-December, performed by the St. Louis Cathedral Concert Choir and Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra