The COVID-19 pandemic might have introduced carnival parades to a halt in 2021, however the 2022 season has been a convincing success for the parish of St. Tammany, Donna O’Daniels, CEO of the Tourism and Conference Fee, informed board members at their June 16 assembly.
And for the primary time, O’Daniels stated their analysis reveals individuals have chosen St. Tammany as a Mardi Gras vacation spot as a result of they really feel safer celebrating on the North Shore.
The info was obtained from surveys carried out by Randall Journey Advertising and marketing, which carried out in-depth face-to-face interviews with vacationers at St. Tammany’s motels, sights and sporting occasions.
“What we’re listening to is one thing we have by no means heard earlier than is that individuals come right here as a result of they really feel secure,” O’Daniels stated. “They select our vacation spot for safety causes.”
O’Daniels stated it ought to give native Carnival Krewe leaders a cause to rethink when their parades take to the streets.
“Previously, there might have been specialists, planners, organizers (in St. Tammany) who thought, “Will I do one thing right here this weekend with Bacchus, Endymion and all these different issues happening (in New Orleans),” O’ stated Daniels.
She shared further analysis from Zartico, a nationwide knowledge firm whose analysis suggests holding extra parades or carnival occasions over the massive weekend earlier than Mardi Gras is prone to maintain the get together and greenback flowing on the North Shore.
“We could also be approaching a degree the place not solely residents need to keep in St. Tammany, but additionally company,” she added.
A Zartico research discovered that extra out-of-state guests got here to St. Tammany’s carnival occasions in 2022 than in 2019. retail shops as nicely.
Zartico knowledge confirmed there have been extra revelers within the state, particularly from New Orleans and Baton Rouge, to maintain the Mardi Gras spirit alive this yr and in St. Tammany.
In different instances, at its June 14 assembly, the panel obtained a clear 2021 audit introduced by John Murray, CPA and Enterprise Advisors LaPorte.
O’Daniels added that she and her workers are getting ready to re-accredit with Locations Worldwide, which represents conference and customer bureaus all over the world. A member of the group evaluates teams in 27 areas of excellence each 4 years, she stated.