Week in Review, July 31-Aug. 4: Taylor Swift, Hancock Whitney, Gas Prices and More

NEW ORLEANS — In 2008, then up-and-coming country music singer Taylor Swift appeared at the Family Gras festival near Lakeside Mall in Jefferson Parish and signed autographs for fans even though her show was rained out. Only 19 years old at the time, she drove to the gig from Nashville with her parents in the car.

My, how times have changed. 

First, Swift spent the last decade and a half becoming a genre-defying international superstar with serious staying power. Then, beginning in March 2023, her Eras Tour has absolutely dominated the live touring industry and is expected to earn a record-breaking $1 billion in sales. This week, Swift announced she is adding 15 dates in 2024 to the tour in four North American cities.

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A three-night stand next October 25-27 in the Caesars Superdome is on the schedule — and local tourism boosters couldn’t be happier.

“Taylor Swift announcing New Orleans [tour dates] will have a tremendous benefit to our economy,” said Kelly Schulz, a senior vice president at New Orleans & Company, the city’s destination management organization. “It will likely sell out the Caesars Superdome and 26,000 hotel rooms within two miles of the Superdome, generate tax revenues and showcase New Orleans as a booming destination built to host.”

Here are more of the week’s top stories:

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