Still undecided on where to go for summer vacation? Whether you’ve been to NOLA or not, New Orleans summer calendar is full of special events to make your stay fun and unforgettable. Almost on a daily basis and at any hour, you’ll see wedding parades take place on the streets of the French Quarter…a great place to enjoy the summer outdoors. Do something different this year, aside from the usual beach vacation. Take a road trip or a short flight to Louisiana for your summer vacay, here is a summer schedule of all that’s going on in this great city! Come see why NOLA is so unique…
NOLA Summer Calendar of Events
3-4 – New Orleans Oyster Festival This free, two-day food festival applauds the French Quarter’s position as the “Oyster Capital of America”
10-11 – French Market Creole Tomato Festival Tomatoes, especially the succulent Creoles, are essential ingredients in many of the most popular dishes served by New Orleans’ top restaurants; chefs love them for their versatility, and diners love them for their unique flavor
18 – Father’s Day Think of something creative to do for Dad!
22-24 – Festigals Unwind with the women in your life at Festigals, with insightful professional development conferences, inspiring keynote speakers, and never-ending food, drinks, and shopping, you’ll leave Festigals feeling empowered, and confident
24-25 – Louisiana Cajun Zydeco Festival The melodic sounds of fiddles, accordions, washboards, guitars and more will be coming from Louis Armstrong Park; admission is FREE and of course, like all true New Orleans festivals, there will be plenty of music, food (especially our world-famous Cajun cuisine) and exquisite handcrafted items that could only come from centuries of bayou culture
30-July 2– ESSENCE Festival Get ready for the best in R&B, hip-hop, jazz, blues, and more! New Orleans is proud to once again host Essence Fest, the nation’s premier showcase for contemporary African American music and culture
1-2 – ESSENCE Festival Continued from June 30
4 – Independence Day French Quarter Fireworks New Orleans Summers are hot – and there is no hotter place to be for the Fourth of July than in the Crescent City; the biggest celebration happens on the banks of the Mississippi with the annual Go Fourth on the River extravaganza. “Dueling Barges” is an exciting fireworks show to the tune of patriotic music – it’s a world renown, one-of-a-kind spectacle!
7-9 – San Fermin en Nueva Orleans Every July in New Orleans, the Annual Running of the Bulls swarms through the streets of downtown New Orleans! Set to coincide with the world-famous Encierro (Running of the Bulls) at the San Fermin Festival in Pamplona, Spain, the New Orleans version of the event is uniquely its own…no need to fly to Spain!
14 – Bastille Day Fete The Bastille Day party features live music, food and drinks to toast the memorable occasion. This is a family-oriented event with fun things for the kids to do, including arts and crafts and games. All of the neighborhood’s stores and businesses actively participate; there are also pétanque games going on during the Bastille Day celebration, similar to the Italian bocce and English lawn bowling, pétanque is played by nearly 20 million people worldwide, 17 million in France alone
18-23 – Tales of the Cocktail Famous drinks such as the Absinthe Frappe, the Ramos Gin Fizz, the Obituary Cocktail, the Hurricane, the Hand Grenade and many others owe their beginnings to the imagination and creativity of New Orleans bartenders. To commemorate this grand tradition, “Tales of the Cocktail” was conceived in 2003 and has rapidly grown into one of the city’s favorite celebrations
1-31 – COOLinary New Orleans During the month of August, experience cuisine that delights your palate and is an integral part of the history and culture of New Orleans; this annual culinary tradition features specially priced prix-fixe lunch and dinner menus
3-6 – Satchmo SummerFest Over the years, Satchmo SummerFest has evolved into what one visiting music writer called “a mini-JazzFest”; with three days of outdoor concerts, music history seminars, jazz exhibits, a jazz mass, a second-line parade and plenty of local food delicacies and drinks, the festival has become a travelers’, as well as a local, favorite
5 – Whitney White Linen Night The white linen tradition is revisited every summer in the city’s Warehouse Arts District on the first Saturday night in August during Whitney White Linen Night; those who get into the spirit of the occasion wear white outfits and some even wear white hats as they leisurely stroll through the art galleries along Julia Street and adjacent side streets
12 – Red Dress Run Sponsored by the Hash House Harriers, a self-proclaimed “drinking club with a running problem,” the Annual Red Dress Run through the French Quarter and downtown New Orleans is another of those uniquely New Orleans fun events that doubles as a fundraiser; it is open to men and women alike and though the concept originated as a charitable event to raise money for breast cancer research, it donates its proceeds to other charities as well
13 – Dirty Linen Night Royal Street jeweler Linda Sampson is credited with coming up with the name for a new event to promote the art galleries and antique shops on Royal Street, and it was catchy and memorable enough to stick
TBA – NOLA Downtown Music and Arts Festival New Orleans’ Warehouse District and the Central Business District are the city’s hot spots for business professionals, art lovers and some of the best summer festivals; at the end of every summer, the Music Business Institute and Cutting Edge C.E. Conference hosts a NOLA-style festival in these two popular neighborhoods, featuring musicians, pop-up shops, food trucks and more…the festival has been going on for 23 years!
30– September 4 – Southern Decadence What began as a simple going-away party in 1972 has evolved into one of New Orleans’ premier annual events: Southern Decadence. Held annually over Labor Day weekend, this celebration of LGBT culture has begun attracts over 125,000 participants from all over the world; nicknamed the “Gay Mardi Gras,” Southern Decadence is one of those quintessential New Orleans occasions in which participants get to strut their stuff in elaborate costumes and high fashion
For more detailed information on each summer event and a list of featured NOLA events for the full 2017 year, please visit, New Orleans Online