NEW ORLEANS WILL Score big-time with an exciting lineup of upcoming sporting events #TourismIsHow

“It just goes to show that the relationship between us and the fans goes well beyond just the playing field or what we do in the Superdome every Sunday. I’d say that is most unique. Across all professional sports, I don’t know if it’s like that any other place.” Drew Brees, Quarterback and godsend for the New Orleans Saints

Drew Brees Says New Orleans is Unique

Image by Andrei Christian on Flickr

New Orleans has always been a top-notch destination — attracting people from all over the world with its intoxicating bouquet of food and drink, music and culture. And our overall commitment to letting the good times roll blends these ingredients into an inexplicably delightful mixture, one that can’t be found anywhere else. It’s a gumbo-kind-of-experience.

One of the best ways to get a taste of all that this city has to offer is through the plethora of sporting events we host. During any given professional competition held in New Orleans, visitors and natives alike can indulge in pretty much every aspect of good life in the Big Easy, which is why we continue to lead the nation in sports tourism. This is especially good news for those of us who call this city home. Tourism is the number one industry in New Orleans — it generates billions of dollars for our economy, supports 78,000 local jobs and shines a positive light on our wonderful community through word-of-mouth and media coverage.

The Crescent City will set its stage for a variety of exciting sporting events in the coming months, ushering in countless fans and tourists ready and willing to take part in our unique culture. Of course, the Saints will be the belles of the ball, and rightfully so. The energy of the Who Dat Nation — both in the Dome and on the streets — is parallel to none. (Note to the Atlanta Falcons: You pulled it off against us on your turf, but come December 21, we’ll be waiting for you.) Click here to download the full 2014 Saints schedule.

On November 29, the Mercedes-Benz Superdome will also serve as the battling grounds for the 2014 Bayou Classic, an annual showdown between Grambling State University and Southern University that draws thousands of fans from all over the country for the five-day celebration. The 81st Annual Allstate Sugar Bowl also kicks off in the Superdome on January 1, 2015. The organizers’ mission is “to sponsor and promote amateur sporting events which will foster revenue and spark economic growth in the city of New Orleans and the state of Louisiana.” That’s certainly a goal worth toasting to.

Bayou Classic is an annual showdown between Grambling State University and Southern University in New Orleans.

Photo by Paul Broussard on Flickr

The Superdome and Smoothie King Arena aren’t the only gems that New Orleans provides for traveling sports fans. The inaugural Indy Grand Prix of Louisiana is set to burn rubber at the recently redesigned NOLA Motorsports Park April 10-12. The three-day festival is sure to attract a new and enthusiastic demographic for the city. For those looking for a more leisurely landscape, the TPC Louisiana will host the annual Zurich Classic PGA Tournament April 20-26.

And that’s just scratching the surface of the playing field in New Orleans, where we take just as much pride in our sports as we do our food, our music, our lifestyle. It is no coincidence that tourism plays such an integral role in the growth and development of this special town.