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Laissez les bon temps rouler à la Nouvelle-Orléans!

Written by: Chris Yandle, Doctoral student, Mercer University
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You might not know this, but New Orleans is more than French Quarter and Bourbon Street. However, 700 words aren’t nearly enough to share the wonderful things this beautiful city has to offer.

After moving my family all across the southeast from Louisiana to Waco, Texas, to Miami to Atlanta, the melodic jazz notes of New Orleans were calling us home. We moved home to Louisiana in 2016 after I gave up my college sports career to focus on my Ph.D. studies.

Moving home to New Orleans was the best decision we made. Whether the NASSM 2019 Conference is your first visit to New Orleans or your fifty-first, bienvenue! There is so much this city has to offer, and once you’re here, New Orleans feel like home. You may never want to leave.

Start applying your sunscreen and bug spray now because the end of May is around the time New Orleans becomes hotter than the surface of the sun.

By the time you arrive in New Orleans for NASSM, you’ll be greeted by our new Louis Armstrong International Airport (set to open in February 2019). It’s a much-needed facelift for the city, and if the renderings are any indication, then you’ll be greeted with a great first-impression. Expect about a 25-30 minute ride from the airport to the Sheraton, but it means you can be a tourist and take in the scenery on the ride into the city.

The Sheraton New Orleans Hotel, your home for four days in the Crescent City, is located in the heart of the CBD (Central Business District). You’re a five-minute walk from the winding banks of the mighty Mississippi River, but you can hear the steam calliope of the Steamboat Natchez as she rolls up and down the river.

As someone who’s been to many conferences in cities where I don’t have a car, the first question I always ask: What’s near the hotel? You’re in luck because you have your choice of more than 100 restaurants, cafes, and a myriad of entertainment options within a 10-minute walk of the hotel, including:

New Orleans is the city that never sleeps…and that never stops eating or partying. No matter your entertainment preference, there is something for everyone in New Orleans. Since you’re five blocks from the river, take a stroll along the Mississippi in Woldenberg Park or evade the heat with the intoxicating air conditioned Aquarium of the Americas. Don’t want to walk back to the hotel after a great visit to the aquarium? The Canal Streetcar line terminates at the base of Canal Street at the river. Buy a five-day pass Jazzy Pass for unlimited streetcar rides through the city of New Orleans – trust me, it’ll come in handy in a later blog post.

Who can forget the French Quarter (the oldest neighborhood when New Orleans was founded in 1718)? The French Quarter is 0.49 square miles of history, food, drinks, fun, and- well- other things.

Every morning when you walk out the hotel, a city of endless possibilities awaits you. All you have to do is wear sunscreen, comfortable shoes, and “pass a good time”.

Let the good times roll in New Orleans!

P.S. If you want more local info for your visit to New Orleans, send me an email or a tweet. Hope to see you here!

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