New Orleans or Bust!

I am off to the Pelican State! Did you know that was the official nickname of good ol’ Louisiana? Well yes, I am taking off very early Friday morning (with a layover in Atlanta) landing in Mississippi and hitting the road for an hour down to New Orleans. Jazzfest 2013 starts Friday and I am in pursuit of a music-filled weekend. First up, John Mayer. The Connecticut born guitar swooner will be headlining and I have to admit that was the main reason I agreed to head down south for an extended weekend. Saturday night is Billy Joel, and Sunday will be Dave Matthews, but I haven’t seen Mayer since before his two-year hiatus (due to a throat granuloma). He is the ultimate, and I am sure he will put on wonderful performance as always.

I have gathered some plan ideas via Facebook and Twitter, because no amount of research compares to the tidbits of information given by word-of-mouth. If anyone has any “go-to” ideas, send them my way in the comment box below. I want to go armed and ready to take on what people have experienced firsthand and know to be the best in the city.

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Staying: Clarion Inn & Suites 

Near the French Quarter, these rooms have been sold out for months. I’m assuming because of Jazzfest, but also because of its proximity to everything fun in New Orleans.

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Doing: New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival 

A two-weekend festival, I am only going for one (missing Fleetwood Mac and Black Keys the following weekend). Luckily, I have seen them both before. Friday is my day and the weather thus far looks fantastic. Friday’s lineup also hosts Band of Horses, one of my top bands. Unfortunately, they go on a different stage the same exact time as John Mayer. No question on who I will be seeing, just very upsetting.

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Detour: Mississippi

Oh yeah, we are flying into Gulfport, Mississippi. The plane tickets were significantly cheaper. I am not sure if any of you could recommend something in that general area that is worth stopping for, but if so, feel free to share. I cannot say when I would be in Mississippi again, so if I could optimize my travels by snapping a cool photo, or scoping an amazing landscape, that is a must!

Eating: As much as possible

I hear the festival alone has tons of vendors serving up delicious and local cuisine like creole crabcakes, crawfish, okra gumbo, gator bites, barbecue everything and traditional cobblers, pies and desserts. I am trying to really limit my calorie intake this week, as well as do some extra cardio everyday, so to feel less guilty about stuffing face nonstop. If you guys know of any restaurant in New Orleans area that is worth checking out, do let me know. We have a rental so if it’s outside the city, I am up for the drive.

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Keep in touch!

You can follow me (or just creep on from time to time) on Instagram, a social media wonder which I use regularly, if you want to see NOLA through my eyes… and the lense of my iPhone camera.

You can see what I am eating, who I am getting down to at the festival, local brews I plan on slamming back and of course, the beautiful sites of one of America’s most eclectic cities.

Instagram name:

_gogozombie

Twitter handle:

@smastroni

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