New Orleans, LA


New Orleans is a diverse, welcoming, and rapidly expanding city, with a comfortable climate, and a rich culture that thrives on music, entertainment, and cuisine.

Population

New Orleans is the 50th largest city in the U.S. with over 380,000 residents. In fact, over 1 million people live in the New Orleans metro region, accounting for approximately a quarter of the state’s population. Recent college graduates represent a growing portion of the city’s population, with approximately 1 in 3 New Orleans residents in their 20s or 30s, and residents are racially, ethnically, and culturally diverse. Tourism, healthcare, and education are the city’s main economic drivers, and New Orleans has 14 colleges and universities, including Tulane University, the LSU Health Science Center, the University of New Orleans, Loyola University of New Orleans, and Xavier University at New Orleans.

Climate

New Orleans is subtropical with an average temperature of nearly 70 degrees. Winters are mild and rarely approach freezing, with the last noteworthy snowfall in 2008. The average temperature is 53 degrees in January, and 83 degrees in July and August. The summer months are the wettest, with hurricane risk peaking in August, and October is the driest.

Parades

Mardi Gras is a family-friendly season of parades in January and February celebrated by most New Orleans residents, including students and faculty, many of whom participate in the parades themselves. Some of the more novel parades include Chewbacchus (Sci-Fi/Weird), Barkus (costumed dogs), Muses (decorated shoes), and Krewe du Vieux (many in psychology)

Sports

There are many sports to watch and enjoy year-round, including Saints football, Pelicans basketball, Zephyrs baseball, Jesters soccer, Crescent City Soccer, Bike Easy, and NOLA Social Ride.

Music, Arts, and Other Entertainment

There are also many cultural events to enjoy; see the annual Festival Calendar or Daily Events Calendar.

Cuisine

New Orleans is known for its cuisine, with over 1,400 restaurants, and many culinary festivals and renowned chefs. Cajun, French, Italian, and African cuisine are particularly popular. Some traditional favorites include gumbo, jambalaya, andouille, crawfish étouffée, shrimp creole, muffuletta and po-boy sandwiches, red beans and rice, oysters rockefeller, bread pudding, bananas foster, beignets, and creole pralines.