Thanksgiving Weekend was Busy in New Orleans
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 9, 2015
Thanksgiving Weekend was Busy in New Orleans
Reports for attendance for the 42nd Annual Bayou Classic show increase in attendance – the largest crowd to attend the Bayou Classic since the Classic returned to New Orleans following Katrina in 2006
NEW ORLEANS –Again this year the 42nd Annual Bayou Classic brought several business-focused and family-friendly events to New Orleans for the thousands of visitors to the city of New Orleans for Thanksgiving week/weekend.
The Bayou Classic is the annual extravaganza bringing the fans and alumni of Southern University and Grambling State University to New Orleans each November for a celebration of football, family and the traditions and pageantry surrounding Historically Black Colleges and Universities. With an estimated economic impact of $50 million, the Bayou Classic is an important event for the City of New Orleans.
The attendance at this year’s Bayou Classic was 29,652 for Battle of the Bands and Greek Show and 62,907 for the 42nd Annual Bayou Classic game.
Once again this year, the Bayou Classic saw an increase in attendance and the largest crowd to attend the Bayou Classic since the Classic returned to New Orleans following Katrina in 2006 after a one-year hiatus in Houston.
And as reported by one of Louisiana’s leading independent sports websites, SportsNOLA.com, “…the oxygen is back in the building and in the (Bayou) Classic…clearly, the game is trending upward as attendance has increased every year since…”
Highlights of the 42nd Annual Bayou Classic include:
- With the Grambling Tigers winning the Bayou Classic with a score of 34-23 against the Southern Jaguars, the series returns to a tied with both schools holding 21 wins each in the faceoff.
- With the win, the Grambling Tigers move onto the SWAC Championship this year to be held in Houston on Saturday, December 5, 2015.
- The iconic Bayou Classic trophy was retired to this last year’s winner – the Southern Jaguars. After being housed on the Southern campus, it was donated to the Smithsonian Institute to become a permanent display at the National Museum of African American History and Culture set to open next year. The new 45-pound iconic Bayou Classic trophy, created by Bennet Awards, was presented for the first time to the Grambling Tigers. The new trophy is hand-polished Silver Plated Pewter. (Visuals/photos available upon request.)
- Hotel occupancy for Bayou Classic’s week of events was more than 90% occupied citywide with Friday night’s occupancy being 95% citywide.
- The Bayou Classic Thanksgiving Day had an increased attendance of more than 80,000 attendees.
- Bayou Classic Fan Fest, presented by Cox Louisiana with entertainment by Clear Channel New Orleans, had an attendance of more than 10,000 attendees
- More than 250 students gathered information from more than 30 colleges and businesses during the Bayou Classic Career & College Fair
- VH1 “Hollywood Exes” Celebrity & Destiny Moscato Entrepreneur Nicole Murphy, Rap Music Artist and Businessman Lil’ Wayne and brother and sister recording artists Brandy and Ray J all attended Bayou Classic events this year.
- Epic Records recording artist, signed to Timbaland, from the hit TV show Empire, V Bozeman sang the national anthem for this year’s Bayou Classic.
- In addition to the performances of Southern and Grambling’s historic marching bands at halftime of the Bayou Classic game, this year there was a special halftime presentation in celebration of NBC’s live production of The Wiz and blues singer TK Soul joined the Grambling University Marching Band to close out halftime.
- The Bayou Classic was named one of the 40 most significant events of the past 40 years by SMG in celebration of Mercedes-Benz Superdome’s 40th anniversary.
“It is exciting to witness increase in attendance and guests for our events again this year – and bringing attendance back to over 60,000 again, said Dottie Belletto, President and CEO of New Orleans Convention Company, Inc. (NOCCI), the management firm of the Bayou Classic. “The Bayou Classic has always been about football and our efforts to broaden the Bayou Classic into the ‘Super Bowl of all Classics” is coming to fruition with more business happening during the week, continued growth in visitors to New Orleans, increasing attendance to all of our events – including game day – and more dollars going to support these two universities, our local and regional small businesses and HBCUs nationwide.”
About The Bayou Classic
The Bayou Classic ( www.mybayouclassic.com ) features one of America’s greatest college sports rivalries, bringing the fans and alumni of Southern University and Grambling State University to New Orleans for a celebration of football, family and the traditions and pageantry surrounding Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Proceeds from the annual series of Bayou Classic events provide support to the campuses’ athletic programs and fund scholarships through the SU System Foundation and the GSU Foundation.
The 42nd Annual Bayou Classic is supported by the following organizations – The Louisiana Office of Tourism, Louisiana Office of Culture Recreation & Tourism and Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne; MillerCoors; BP Gulf Tourism and Seafood Promotional Fund; SHEEN Magazine; Destiny Moscato; Toyota Green Initiative; The New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation; The New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau; Cox Louisiana; US Marine Corps; UBER; Hyatt Regency New Orleans; Tom Joyner Foundation; AllState; The Coca-Cola Company; Parish of Caddo – Shreveport, Louisiana; The Wiz Live/NBC; US Coast Guard; Essence; Bennett Awards; Metro PCS; The Mercedes-Benz Superdome; SMG; The Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco Free Living; Visit Baton Rouge; US Navy; McDonalds; Acadian Ambulance; Amtrak; Entergy; The French Market Corporation; Doc Griggs; Louisiana Highway Safety Commission; Downtown Development District; Eyes Open with Tony Brown; The Advocate, The Acadian Advocate & The New Orleans Advocate; Dianne Andrews Black & White; INFORM Media; Press Box to Press Row; I Heart Radio & Q93; WBOK 1230 AM; Cumulus New Orleans/Baton Rouge.
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Jeffrey Ory, ABC, APR
il Stratega Communication & Marketing
Mobile: (504) 458-5866 (texts are also acceptable to this mobile number if needed)