November 16, 2019
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started forty-nine years ago as a simple going-away party.
As a top gay Labor Day Weekend destination, it has evolved into one of
our world's major annual
events. It is one of the largest annual celebrations and
festivals in New Orleans, and has become known as the "Gay Mardi
Gras." People begin to arrive on the Wednesday before Labor
Day, and generally don't even think about stopping or going home
until the following Tuesday.
Attendance in 2019 broke all records, with over 275,000 gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender
participants, and an economic impact
estimated to be in excess of $285 million.
Southern Decadence is one of the top five annual events in the
New Orleans, along with Mardi Gras, Jazz Fest, Essence
and French Quarter Festival. As Liberace once said,
"Too much of a good thing is wonderful."
New Orleans' wildest neighborhood gets even crazier as the French
Quarter is packed for the entire event; however, the big day is
Sunday. That's when the
Grand Marshals lead the annual walking parade through the streets
beginning at 2 p.m.
The theme for 2019 was "Fruit Salad: Come Toss A Good Time"
and the official "colors" were polka dots and pinstripes.
The official theme and colors for 2020 will be announced in June.
The corner of Bourbon and St. Ann Streets is
generally considered to be the epicenter of
Orleans, and even more so during the Southern Decadence
festival weekend. At that
intersection is the largest gay nightclub,
The Bourbon Pub
video bar and
club, which is home to the hottest dancers in town.
And most of the city's main gay attractions are within a few blocks.
street party activities take place in the immediate area of
the French Quarter, and the dance parties are in the clubs.
Since the gay bars never
close, there is something happening around the clock.
the nation's best DJs work the crowds to a frenzy.
Guest DJs for 2019 were Tracy Young, Ivan Mariscal
Whitney Day. New York resident
and New Orleans native
DJ Max Rodriguez was also on hand, joining resident VJs
Brendan Thompson and Chris Allen to provide the video entertainment
downstairs at The Bourbon Pub / Parade.
DJs for 2020 will be announced in June.
No wonder the weekend is often
referred to as
The Bourbon Street Extravaganza, the FREE outdoor
concert at the corner of Bourbon
and St. Ann Streets on Saturday afternoon, will return in
2020 for its 16th anniversary.
Performers for 2010 will be announced soon, and complete Bourbon Street
Extravaganza information is
SOUTHERN DECADENCE DATES
(always Labor Day Weekend)
2017: August 31 through September 4
2018: August 30 through September 3
2019: August 29 through September 2
2020: September 3 through September 7
2021: September 2 through September 6
2022: September 1 through September 5
Please check our list of Frequently Asked Questions.
Or email us at
("DECADANCE" is a registered trade name of
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