NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - An estimated 460,000 people attended the 2015 New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, according to festival organizers, marking the highest Jazz Fest attendance since Hurricane Katrina.
The official numbers were released on Monday evening. Attendance for 2014 was 435,000.
The first week of Jazz Fest was muddied by heavy rains. Several stages were forced to shut down early as severe weather stuck. April 24 headliners Keith Urban, Wilco and Jimmy Cliff were forced to cut their Friday night performances short.
However, the second weekend saw sunny skies. Massive crowds swarmed the Fair Grounds Saturday night to see headliner Elton John. It was elbow-to-elbow as tens-of-thousands packed the Acura Stage.
Twelve stages featured nonstop music and more than 60 food booths served up plate-after-plate of some of the best music festival cuisine in the world.
Elton John, The Who, Jimmy Buffett, Tony Bennett & Lady Gaga, No Doubt, Keith Urban, Pitbull, John Legend, Ed Sheeran, T.I., Hozier, Lenny Kravitz, and many others appeared, turning New Orleans into the best place to be for music fans from around the world as they welcomed spring over ten days, April 24 through May 3.
Hundreds of New Orleans and Louisiana bands performed the gospel, blues, jazz, Cajun, zydeco, and other Louisiana roots music for which the Festival is famous.
Next year's event is scheduled for April 22 - May 1, 2016.