“If there’s one thing we’ve learned over the past few years,” Hall says, “it’s that Mother Nature is a vegan, for sure.”
The prevalence of festing meant that music was an important component from the get-go. Thanks to free events like French Quarter Fest or Wednesdays at the Square, New Orleanians are used to live music. In order to justify charging a live music-savvy population to get into a place where you need to pay for food, too, Hall has carefully crafted the the band lineups since 2010.
The plan is to use the music to bring in a larger crowd from outside the local area. Spending $25 to see bands like The Chris Robinson Brotherhood, George Porter Jr., Shovels & Rope, and Railroad Earth is a bargain for anyone. “It’s like, come and take advantage of our terrible business acumen!” according to Louapre.
On the big day, optimistic in flip flops or cautious in knee high rain boots, attendees wander from booth to booth, trying everything from cracklins topped with pimento cheese, to standard BBQ fare, to an ice cream sandwich made with pork belly ice cream. People compare notes because it’s impossible to try everything. Cans of beer are covered with team-branded koozies and you’re not going to find many attendees without one in hand. Serious music folks set up in front of one of the three music stages and get ready to listen, all while eating and drinking on a beautiful sunny day with cool breezes coming off the adjacent lake.