Here in New Orleans we are blessed to live in one of the most unique and beautiful cities in the country – a city that retains the charm and community atmosphere of a smaller town while offering the cultural richness and assets of a city of millions. In our city of 360,000, we have well over a thousand top-notch restaurants, unparalleled nightlife and an unrivaled music scene, a wonderful zoo and aquarium, notable museums and art galleries, beautiful boutiques and shops, world-class urban parks, theatre, opera, a syphony, a flourishing film industry, and so much more.
There are so many reasons that our city and culture are still thriving today, and one of the big ones is tourism. Our number one industry is tourism, and visitors coming to our city during its rebuilding years, spending money here and giving us extra incentive and resources to beautify our city again, has made the world of a difference in our renaissance. We would not see the unprecedented growth and expansion of our culture without the important stimulation and opportunities that a thriving tourism industry brings.
New Orleanians are not ones to watch the world pass them by. We have incredible cultural assets, and we take full advantage of them, involving ourselves in our community and culture. We may have plenty of room for improvement, and we will continue to aim high in our endeavors, but we have so much to look around and be grateful for. As we continue this journey of strengthening New Orleans, let us never take for granted the wonderful aspects of our city that are right at our fingertips. May we continue to stop and smell the flowers… and see the band… and try the new restaurant… and see live theatre… and enjoy the parks… and so on, and so on.