jazz fest posterNew Orleans plays host to one of the best music festivals in the country this weekend – and we’re more than ready to greet guests who are coming from around the world to experience it! The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, which takes place annually at the Fair Grounds Race Course, is the celebration of the music and culture of New Orleans and Louisiana. Jazz Fest has grown into an internationally recognized event throughout the years, bringing in some of the best all-time musical performances from current and past generations alike. Jazz Fest takes place on two consecutive weekends, starting Friday, April 24th. Find our guide to the first weekend of Jazz Fest below!

Jazz Fest Weekend 1: Top Musical Highlights

Friday, April 25 – Santana, The Avett Brothers, Public Enemy, Gregory Porter, Ruben Blades & Roberto Delgado Orchestra, Honey Island Swamp Band, Irvin Mayfield & the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra.

Saturday, April 26 – Phish, Robert Plant and the Sensational Space Shifters, Robin Thicke, Dukes of Dixieland 40th Anniversary Celebration, Anders Osborne, Keb’ Mo’, Big Freedia

Sunday, April 27 – Eric Clapton, Vampire Weekend, Charlie Wilson, Rodriguez, Galactic, Irma Thomas, Preservation Hal Jazz Band, John Boutte, Newbirth Brass Band

Jazz Fest Parades

Every day of Jazz Fest, you’ll catch one of the most unique aspects of Jazz Fest: parades. Circling around the Jazz Fest Grounds, you’ll run into Mardi Gras Indians, marching and brass bands, and various social aid and pleasure clubs. This weekend features the Mahogony Brass Band, João do Pife of Caruaru – BrazilStoney Creek Drum and DancersWashitaw Nation and Wild Mohicans Mardi Gras IndiansGinga Mundo Capoeira of Bahia, and more!

Jazz Fest Food

For your first weekend at Jazz Fest, we recommend sampling some of the classic New Orleans dishes that you can only find here! Start with an Alligator Pie from Cajun Nights Catering or a Crawfish Sausage from Vaucresson Sausage Company. Next, delve into Pheasant, Quail, and Andouille Gumbo from Prejean’s Restaurant, and slurp it all down with Rose-mint iced tea or, of course, some delicious Abita Beer. For more incredible and delectable treats, check out Thrillest’s picks for the best food at Jazz Fest.

While we’re excited to welcome Jazz Festers this weekend to a sold-out Bienville House, we still have space open for the second weekend of Jazz Fest. Book with your favorite French Quarter hotel today!