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New Years Marks Official Reopening of New Orleans

December 13, 2005

New Years Marks Official Reopening of New Orleans
December 13, 2005 – The New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau has declared that New Year’s weekend will mark the official reopening of the city for leisure travelers. Leisure travelers typically bring $5.6 billion a year into the economy and support 75,000 workers.

The Crescent City Countdown Club will present The New New Orleans New Year celebration in the French Quarter on December 31. The festivities will feature a gumbo pot drop, custom-made by Blaine Kern’s Mardi Gras World and local musicians will be showcased on a stage in front of Jackson Square on Decatur Street across from Washington Artillery Park and the River beginning at 8 p.m.

National and local celebrities will usher in the a new year for the midnight countdown at a fireworks show. Choreographed to music by New Orleans musicians, the exquisite "Symphony in the Sky" will be simulcast live on Magic 101.9 FM and WWL 870 AM and heard in 38 states across the U.S.

The Crescent City Countdown Club, a nonprofit organization being formed exclusively to preserve and produce New Orleans’ traditional New Year’s Eve festivities, is seeking financial and in-kind support to make this year’s celebration one that will reverberate around the country to announce that New Orleans is indeed open for business.

To join the Crescent City Countdown Club, contact Debra L. Bresler, coordinator, at (985) 630-4604.

Businesses and services continue to reopen in New Orleans. According to USA Today, 10 of the 13 airlines servicing Louis Armstrong International have resumed service. Ten flights and three cities are expected to be added by mid-January. Of the 38,000 rooms in tourism-oriented properties available before the storm, 22,000 will be open by Jan. 1 and 28,000 by Mardi Gras in late February, the Convention & Visitors Bureau says. Three major hotels remain closed: the Ritz-Carlton, scheduled to reopen in September; the Fairmont, scheduled to reopen by summer; and the Hyatt Regency, scheduled to reopen in early 2007.

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