Hittin' The Big Easy: HuffPost’s Listen To America Tour Stops In New Orleans

Jenna Amatulli

It’s all over, friends: Our Listen To America road trip came to a close in New Orleans. 

The 25th city on our tour welcomed us with open hearts, stories, beads, beers and unbelievable food. 

New Orleans holds such an illustrious place in the history of the United States, including the waves of refugees who have called the city home and the battles that have been waged there. In recent years, New Orleans was in the public eye because of the damage it experienced during Hurricane Katrina. When the federal levee system failed, 80% of the city flooded and more than 1,500 lives were lost. 

Since then, New Orleans has steadily rebuilt and flourished once more. Its annual Mardi Gras parties and its jazz festival have continued to draw thousands every year, as does its version of Pamplona’s Running of the Bulls.

If the boisterousness of Bourbon Street doesn’t attract you, perhaps one of the city’s many museums ― we particularly loved the Voodoo Museum and the National World War II Museum ― will sell you. There is truly something for everyone in NOLA. 

HuffPost hunkered down in Louis Armstrong Park as well as at Tulane University to chat with locals. We held a panel about Airbnb culture in the city at the Marigny Opera House. Oh, and we had a party because how else would we celebrate visiting folks in 25 cities in seven weeks?!

You can check it all out here:

HuffPost visits New Orleans on Oct. 29 as part of "Listen to America: A HuffPost Road Trip." The bus pulled in at more than 20 cities on its tour across the country.

The French Quarter draws thousands of people as "party central" in New Orleans.

The St. Louis Cathedral in New Orleans reflects the city's French and Catholic heritage.

A costumed couple at a French Quarter restaurant is surprisingly not a surprising sight.

There's always music playing in Jackson Square in New Orleans.

The French Quarter, also known as the Vieux Carre Historic District, is the oldest part of New Orleans.

People arrive at the Listen to America tents during HuffPost's visit to New Orleans.

HuffPost reporter Akbar Shahid Ahmed talks to a woman about signing up to be interviewed.

Jamilah Peters-Muhammad greets Pat Bryants before he signs up to be interviewed.

The big bus is set up near Congo Square during HuffPost's visit to the Big Easy.

Barbara Rath and Bethany Bultman sign up to be interviewed.

Passers-by stop by the Listen to America tents while HuffPost visits  Tulane University in New Orleans on Oct. 30.

Tziporah Lax, far left, and Gabriella Werner sign up to be interviewed.

Hannah Wolter signs up to be interviewed.

People wait to be interviewed during HuffPost's visit to Tulane University.

The Marigny Opera House in New Orleans.

HuffPost Editor-in-Chief Lydia Polgreen speaks to the audience during the HuffPost bus tour wrap party at Marigny Opera House.

Staffers set up the HuffPost bus tour wrap party at Marigny Opera House.

Hillary Frey, HuffPost's director of editorial strategy, talks to the audience during the HuffPost bus tour wrap party.

The presentation on the Listen to America tour at the opera house.

HuffPost Editor-in-Chief Lydia Polgreen talks to Rachel Brienzo and Hillary Frey during the HuffPost bus tour wrap party.

It's party time in New Orleans as the Listen to America bus tour comes to an end.

HuffPost Editor-in-Chief Lydia Polgreen at the bus tour wrap party.

Taryn Finley and Jenna Amatulli of HuffPost meet Brad Cowgill's wife, Kate.

Bus driver Bobby Jansen is presented with a gift during the HuffPost bus tour wrap party.

Bus driver Bobby Jansen is presented with a photo of himself on the bus during the wrap party.

Panelist Emily Peck speaks during the "How Airbnb Is Pushing Locals Out of New Orleans" panel.

Panelist Porsche Lee speaks during the "Voices From the Road" panel.

Panelist Shelley Venus speaks during the "How Airbnb Is Pushing Locals Out of New Orleans" panel.

Two Girls One Shuck employee grills oysters during the wrap party.

Guests mingle in the garden of Marigny Opera House.

The tour bus sits among palm trees in New Orleans

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.