Morale Boost Time

Editor's Note

Forget what that Christmas song says, in New Orleans THIS is the most wonderful time of the year.

It’s mid-January as I write this, and the high school band up the street has been playing and parading around our neighborhood for about a week now. Home decorations have switched over — there’s even been the return of some house floats — and king cake is everywhere. The weather is cool, even cold, but things are definitely heating up…in a good way.

February marks 13 years since my family moved to New Orleans from Omaha, Nebraska, where we lived for seven years while my husband got his medical training. It was a very safe, very inexpensive, very easy, very family-friendly place to live. It also had zero massive, weeks-long street parties and the feels like temperature right now — I just checked — is negative 17 degrees.

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According to the latest economic impact study the total direct and indirect impact of Mardi Gras on the New Orleans economy is $891,202,780, which equals 3.07% of the New Orleans gross domestic product. In Tulane professor Toni Weiss’s study, it was also found that Carnival season generates more than $14 million in state tax revenues.

Even a huge number like $900 million, however, may be low, according to Weiss, who added “my strong sense is that the actual impacts of this internationally renowned celebration are even greater than can be accurately measured.”

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I agree. There are so many intangibles, maybe the biggest of which is the morale boost we see in the city. The streets, the crime, the storms…we all know the challenges of living in this city, which makes it extra incredible that we can all come together and collectively pull off what is commonly referred to as “the world’s largest free party” every single year.

It makes me wonder what other incredible things we could accomplish in this city if we had enough determination and support.

But for now, I’m busy fluffing up my big Dolly Parton wig, breaking in my dancing shoes and getting ready to roll for the second year with the Krewe of Dolly. You can catch us in all our fabulousness at King Arthur, Bosom Buddies and Tucks.

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See you on the streets and thanks for reading!

Kimberley Singletary

Kimberley Singletary, Editor


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